The Ryan Budget In Dollars and Cents

The Ryan Budget has become such a symbolic totem in recent months–and especially in recent days and hours–that it’s sometimes easy to forget its specifics, particular when it comes to non-health-care-entitlement spending that’s received far less attention. At WaPo, Brad Plumer has provided a useful summary of where Ryan wants to cut, based on the “Chairman’s Mark” document that accompanied his FY 2013 budget resolution. Here’s the key graph:

Over the next decade, Ryan plans to spend about 16 percent less than the White House on “income security” programs for the poor — that’s everything from food stamps to housing assistance to the earned-income tax credit. (Ryan’s budget would authorize $4.8 trillion between 2013 and 2022; the White House’s would spend $5.7 trillion.) Compared with Obama, Ryan would spend 25 percent less on transportation. He’d spend 6 percent less on “General science, space, and basic technology.” And, compared with the White House’s proposal, he’d shell out 33 percent less for “Education, training, employment, and social services.”

So add in the Medicaid block grant, and the cancellation of the affordable care act, and it’s easy to understand why the universal interpretation of Ryan’s latest budget proposal when it was unveiled is that it really hammers programs affecting the poor.

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.