Outside conservatives are pushing Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanOn The Trail: Retirements offer window into House Democratic mood Stopping the next insurrection Former Sen. Bob Dole dies at 98 MORE (R-Wis.) to throw out the budget deal hammered out by his predecessor just a few months ago.
Heritage Action, the political arm of the conservative Heritage Foundation, said Tuesday it was incumbent on GOP congressional leaders to cut deeper and push President ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaBarack Obama wishes a happy 58th birthday to 'best friend' Michelle Voting rights is a constitutional right: Failure is not an option Florida looms large in Republican 2024 primary MORE harder.
In October, outgoing Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerDemocrats eager to fill power vacuum after Pelosi exit Stopping the next insurrection Biden, lawmakers mourn Harry Reid MORE (R-Ohio) hammered out a two-year budget accord in one of his final acts before resignation. The package, which required Democratic support to pass, lifted budget caps by $30 billion in fiscal 2017.
Now, Heritage is joining with conservative lawmakers in pushing Ryan to abandon that accord, and return to the lower caps.
“The elevated…funding level has no business being in a conservative Republican budget blueprint,” the group said in a public memo. “There is absolutely no conservative reason to support a Republican budget at spending levels dictated by Barack Obama and congressional Democrats.”
The group's push comes the same day Obama is set to release his final budget proposal while in office. The president's plan has already been rejected out of hand by congressional Republicans, who have gone so far as to not even hold hearings to discuss the document once it is out.
Heritage argued Congress should return to lower funding levels, and satisfy defense hawks among congressional Republicans by making the $30 billion in cuts exclusively from non-defense spending.
One of Ryan’s top goals this year is to see lawmakers pass a dozen appropriations bill, returning to the more traditional model of funding the government, and away from the shutdown fights of the last several years.
But with conservatives lawmakers none too pleased with the BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerDemocrats eager to fill power vacuum after Pelosi exit Stopping the next insurrection Biden, lawmakers mourn Harry Reid MORE blueprint, he is under pressure to come up with a plan that likely cannot count on Democratic support.
Heritage sought to undercut claims that reworking budget levels would upend Ryan's sought-after appropriations process. The group argued that President Obama is unlikely to accept appropriations bills with conservative policy riders at any funding level, so why not push for a more conservative number?
Furthermore, the group noted that if Senate Republicans cannot agree on a budget — 35 GOP senators opposed the Boehner package — they cannot take advantage of the budget reconciliation process that allowed them to push through an ObamaCare repeal in 2015.
And Heritage also issued a warning note to conservatives considering trading a budget vote for another policy priority down the road. The group argued that there is no way to guarantee those promises come to fruition.