Op-Ed: The only common ground between Donald Trump and Paul Ryan is an "R"
July 1, 2016
Last month, House Speaker Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) lukewarm embrace ended months of speculation about the tenuous relationship between the Republican Party’s most prominent elected official and its standard bearer. We all knew Speaker Ryan would get to this point. It seems fitting that his explanation for supporting Donald Trump was as disingenuous as it was tepid.
Paul Ryan’s column in the Janesville Gazette seemed to imply that he and Donald Trump had a shared agenda for our country. Let’s examine that statement. Donald Trump has a tax plan that the non-partisan Tax Foundation has suggested will add $10 trillion dollars to our federal debt over the next 10 years (after shoring up the nomination, Trump has hinted at changes that could reduce that number to $4 trillion). He has vowed that there will be no changes to Social Security or Medicare. In his words, he “won’t touch them”. He’s also going to add billions dollars to our defense budget. In fact, the only program Trump has advocated cutting is the “Department of Environmental”, a non-existent federal agency. As the former budget committee chairman, Ryan has to view these principle tenets of Trump’s fiscal policy as mathematically challenged at best.
Trump has further called for a deportation force, a total ban on Muslims coming into the United States, abrogating our trade agreements, and killing the families of foreign terrorists. Not only are these values not shared by Speaker Ryan, but he has actively spoken out against those dubious policy pronouncements.
So what did Speaker Ryan mean when he pointed to the common ground that he and Trump share? Sadly, I think what he meant is that despite huge differences in policy, temperament, and governing philosophies, both he and Trump are Republicans.
This actually isn’t a surprising revelation. Politics has become a team sport and partisanship is now the new prejudice in America. Fully one-third of Democrats and almost half of all Republicans would be “displeased” if their child married... Continue Reading.