By: AIF Staff
Madison, WI — On Tuesday, September 26th, former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan was a featured guest at UW-Madison’s La Follette School of Public Affairs as part of the University’s Policymaker in Residence program. Ryan, who represented Southern Wisconsin for two decades in the House of Representatives, had an hour-long discussion with the UW-Madison community about ongoing fiscal fights in Congress, the increasing polarization in American politics, and his recently released book, American Renewal: A Conservative Plan to Strengthen the Social Contract and Save the Country’s Finances.
The conversation, moderated by UW Madison’s Susan Yackee, is accessible here.
While on campus in Madison, Ryan conducted a number of interviews and talked about a possible government shutdown, the 2024 Presidential election, and efforts to grow the American economy. Excerpts of those interviews follow.
PBS Wisconsin: Paul Ryan on America’s political landscape going into 2024; policies to stimulate growth
“In the short term, I think you don’t want to do anything to feed more inflation. I think you want to make sure that we don’t stifle innovation with overregulation from government agencies and I think tax policy, you have a lot of the tax code, particularly taxes affecting small businesses, that are expiring in 2025. If we could give businesses certainty that their taxes aren’t going to go up dramatically, that would help a lot of long-term planning.
“Over the long term, we’ve got to get our debt under control and that means we have to deal with the majority of government funding that is not in these annual appropriation bills. Those are our entitlement programs. Our social contract is very important. It provides us a safety net for the poor and health and retirement security for most Americans but it was written in the 20th century in ways that are proving unsustainable in the 21st century. So, we need comprehensive reforms of these programs so that they can continue and so that they don’t bankrupt our country.
“If we have a debt crisis in this country, everybody gets hurt, especially the people who are living paycheck to paycheck, the least among us. So, long-term, Congress needs to fix our fiscal imbalance, our fiscal debt crisis that’s coming but right now, our politics are so unserious. We’re just not even close to solving those problems, unfortunately.”
NBC-15: Ryan says Republicans will lose if Donald Trump is nominee
In an interview with NBC-15’s Mark McPherson, former Speaker Paul Ryan detailed his thoughts on a looming government shutdown and the 2024 election.
Channel3000: Ryan on 2024 election, redistricting and getting behind the wheel of the Wienermobile
“When I was House Budget Chair, [Washington Democratic Sen.] Patty Murray and I did two budget agreements to get past the sequester in the 2013-2015 era. Look, we have divided government. This is the reality that a lot of members — no, I shouldn’t say a lot of members — this is the reality that a few members do not want to acknowledge. You have divided government. The House is Republican, the Senate is Democrat, the President is a Democrat. That means you have to work together to find a compromise to get through these moments.
“I think Speaker McCarthy did a really good job with President Biden on the debt limit deal, getting a good compromise, reaching budget totals that they’re going to spend to, and now executing it. Well, a small minority of Republicans, against the will of a majority of Republicans, didn’t like that and are trying to derail that, and regrettably, I think that will lead to a government shutdown.
“But at the end of the day, I think the speaker is going to honor that deal. So yes, I know exactly what Kevin is going through, I’ve been through the same kinds of moments before. They’re frustrating, but we’re going to get through this. We’re going to get through this.
“A government shutdown is not like a debt limit default. It’s very different as far as its effects on the economy. It’s far different, far less acute than, say, a default. I do believe that they will get the government funded at the end of the day, but it’s going to be a bumpy road between now and then.”
A recap of the coverage from Ryan’s engagement at the La Follette School of Public Affairs follow.
- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: ‘It can’t get any worse’: Paul Ryan laments state of GOP under Trump but remains ‘bullish’ on future
- Badger Herald: Ryan visits UW to discuss public policy
- Daily Cardinal: Ryan discusses partisan divide, Trump electability in UW-Madison visit
- Spectrum News: Former Speaker Paul Ryan talks political divides, 2024 presidential race during UW-Madison visit
- Associated Press: Former Speaker Paul Ryan says Republicans will lose if Donald Trump is nominee
- Cap Times: Ryan predicts government shutdown, hits Trump at UW event
- WKOW: ‘We lose with this guy’: Paul Ryan talks about Trump and the possible government shutdown
Click here to download a copy of American Renewal: A Conservative Plan to Strengthen the Social Contract and Save the Country’s Finances.