The Spectacle Blog

Ryan Pushes Back Against Gingrich’s “Suicide” Comment

By on 12.14.11 | 11:14AM

Rep. Paul Ryan tells Robert Costa that he's not impressed by Newt Gingrich's recommendation that Republicans avoid unpopular agenda items to avoid political "suicide":

Ryan, in an interview with National Review Online, says that he disagrees with Gingrich, and urges Republicans to confront fiscal problems, irrespective of political risk. Worrying about electoral "suicide," he says, is a disservice to voters, "who don't want to be pandered to like children."

"This is not the 1990s," Ryan says. "The ‘Mediscare' is not working and we should not back down from this fight. I, for one, believe the country is ready, they're hungry for it. They are ready to hear real solutions. We shouldn't wait around for the status quo to become popular."

"Leaders don't follow the polls, leaders change the polls," Ryan says. "We have moved so far in advancing entitlement reform, not just in Congress but in this [presidential] race, with most of the candidates embracing comprehensive entitlement reform. That has been a very good thing. At this point, we should be moving forward, not moving backwards."

Ryan has already got almost every Republican in Congress to sign onto his fiscal reform plan, as well as the other GOP presidential contenders, so it makes sense that he'd be frustrated by Gingrich's resistance. 

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