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WisPolitics: Ryan, Kind talk potential debt deals on 'UpFront'

July 5, 2011
In The News


U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, chairman of the House Budget Committee, suggests a deal regarding the U.S. debt ceiling will be reached before the Aug. 2 deadline.

“Our goal is not to default. ... Our goal is to get spending under control and get a really good down payment on the debt,” said Ryan (left) on Sunday's “UpFront with Mike Gousha,” a statewide TV newsmagazine produced in conjunction with

Ryan said that his philosophy for dealing with debt crisis is simple: “For every dollar that the president wants to increase the debt limit ... cut more than a dollar’s worth of spending.”

Ryan emphasized the need to grow the economy as key to tackling the national debt, something he says can only be done by cutting spending.

“What will happen if we don't get a real deal that really cuts spending is we think the bond markets will panic,” said Ryan.

When asked about his re-election, Ryan expressed confidence people will recognize his commitment to solving the crisis.

“I feel I had a moral obligation to the people I represent that if I see a massive threat to our economy today. ... I have a duty to do something about it,” he said.

Gousha also sat down with Dem U.S. Rep. Ron Kind to discuss his take on what needs to happen to avoid further economic problems.

“We better have a deal,” said Kind, “The economy is fragile enough. Something like this could tip it over again.”

Kind emphasized the need for shared sacrifice.

“When you’ve got large oil companies sitting on record profits ... and the (governor's) budget is asking seniors to double their out of pocket expenses for the health care that they desperately need, I think our priorities are a little bit out of whack,” Kind said.

Kind said he thinks it's the responsibility of elected officials to avoid defaulting on the debt.

“It is unconstitutional for us to default on our obligations,” said Kind. “Under the 14th Amendment, the full faith and credit of the United States must be adhered to.”

Kind, who’s been mentioned as a possible candidate for U.S. Senate next year or guv if there is a recall election, was also very critical of Gov. Scott Walker's budget, challenging him to find a way to bridge the gap between the state and its workers.

“It's not the Wisconsin way,” Kind said. “It could potentially disenfranchise not only the youth in our state, but low-income families.”