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Newt on the Ryan Plan: Go for It Newt on the Ryan Plan: Go for It

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Politics

Newt on the Ryan Plan: Go for It

He compared the debate to ones that took place in 1980 and 1996, when he said Republicans successfully argued Democratic "scare tactics" on Medicare were part of a "big lie." "The lessons of 1980 and 1995-96 are clear," said Gingrich. "The Democrats' Mediscare big lie campaign will inevitably collapse if we cheerfully insist on telling the truth." Republicans are on the defensive about Ryan's budget after Democratic candidate Kathy Hochul defeated Republican Jane Corwin in a western New York district that is normally safely Republican. Hochul's campaign time and time again tied Corwin to Ryan's plan for Medicare, an issue Democrats claimed propelled Hochul to victory. Gingrich's comments in the wake of Corwin's defeat complete a 180-degree turn from the stand he took earlier this month. During his first appearance as a presidential candidate on NBC's Meet The Press, Gingrich argued that Ryan's plan was "too big a jump" politically, comments that might now appear prophetic. But the furious criticism that those comments -- which also included Gingrich's description of Ryan's plan as "right wing social engineering," drew furious backlash from conservatives, and pinned the ex-Speaker down for the first weeks of his presidential campaign with apologies. Although all but four House Republicans voted for the Ryan budget, their Senate colleagues appear less enthused. Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., has already said he won't back the plan, and Hochul's victory could push other moderate Republicans to oppose it when it comes up for an expected vote this week.

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