Ryan defends budget as 'most reasonable' way to cut the deficit

"Under our budget, spending will rise an average of 3.4 percent a year for the next ten years, versus the current path, which is it's rising 5 percent a year for the next ten years," Ryan said. "And what we're showing is, you can balance the budget by reducing the growth of spending to 3.4 percent a year.

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"This is not an irrational position to take, it's actually the most reasonable position to take," he added. "And those who claim that we should never balance our budget, I think they're on the outside of consensus. They're to the left of common sense."

Ryan said he is surprised each year at how surprised Democrats are that Republicans want to repeal the health law, reform the tax codes, drill for oil, reform Medicare to save it from bankruptcy, and balance the budget.

"We've been pretty much consistent with our views all along as to what we believe, so when you hear this kind of reaction, I just sort of shrug my shoulders at it," he said.

When pressed by Humphries on how Democrats have reacted, Ryan said, "Sometimes I think I'm not doing my job right unless these people criticize me."

Ryan rejected the idea that Republicans should give up on what they believe just because they failed to win the White House or Senate during last year's election in which Ryan was the candidate for vice president. "Since when are you supposed to turn in your deeply held principles after an election, whether you won it or lost it?" he asked. "I mean, I don't understand that."

Ryan also defended his budget's call for repeal of the health law by warning that Americans still have yet to see all the "gory details" in the law, which will not be fully implemented until 2014.

"This is going to be, I firmly believe, a really unpopular law," he said. "People are going to be shocked when they see how many folks are getting dumped off their employer health insurance, how many seniors on Medicare are being denied access to care, how much more expensive medical devices are going to become.

"They are going to be shocked when they see the taxes and the spending and the rationing that results from this law."