Ryan: “We don’t think all the answers lie in Washington”

posted at 2:50 pm on February 25, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

For those who thought today’s summit was a carefully-laid trap for Republicans set by Barack Obama, let me ask this: How many networks would have carried the following argument by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) had he made it on the steps of the Capitol? It likely wouldn’t have been aired even in passing on the talking-head -cable network shows. Instead, with multiple networks covering the proceedings, Ryan laid out the conservative argument and laid bare the central conceit of the Democratic efforts on reform, which is that one set of standards fits all:

The difference is this. We don’t think all the answers lie in Washington.

By federalizing the regulation of insurance, and by mandating exactly how it’ll work, you make it more expensive and you reduce the competition among insurers for peoples business. We want to decentralize the system, give more power to small businesses, more power to individuals, and make insurance compete more. But if you federalize it, you standardize it and mandate it, you do not achieve that. And that’s the big difference.

The risk going in to the summit wasn’t that Republicans would get trapped into a bill they opposed. It was that the media attention that follows Barack Obama would give Republicans the media platform for their own principles and proposals. What will resonate more strongly with Americans — the idea that the federal government should narrow our choices to a couple of key mandates, or the idea that grown-ups can make their own choices and that government should just ensure that fraud doesn’t occur? Democrats have just set themselves up to get a loud and clear answer to that question.

Update: The Senate Republican Caucus has been rounding up media reaction, which tends to support the decision to battle the Democrats in public, emphases mine:

CNN’s WOLF BLITZER: “It looks like the Republicans certainly showed up ready to play.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

CNN’s GLORIA BORGER: “The Republicans have been very effective today. They really did come to play. They were very smart.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

  • BORGER: “They took on the substance of a very complex issue. … But they really stuck to the substance of this issue and tried to get to the heart of it and I think did a very good job.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)
  • BORGER: “They came in with a plan. They mapped it out.”  (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

CNN’s DAVID GERGEN: “The folks in the White House just must be kicking themselves right now. They thought that coming out of Baltimore when the President went in and was mesmerizing and commanding in front of the House Republicans that he could do that again here today. That would revive health care and would change the public opinion about their health care bill and they can go on to victory. Just the opposite has happened.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

  • GERGEN: “He doesn’t have a strong Democratic team behind him.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

THE HILL’S A.B. STODDARD: “I think we need to start out by acknowledging Republicans brought their ‘A Team.’ They had doctors knowledgeable about the system, they brought substance to the table, and they, I thought, expressed interest in the reform.  I thought in the lecture from Senator John McCain and on the issue of transparency, I thought today the Democrats were pretty much on their knees.” (Fox News’ “Live,” 2/25/10)

Maybe the GOP sandbagged Obama the first time around?


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Obama is discussing reconciliation: What could possibly go wrong? Oh, the part about Americans are not always interested in the inner workings of Congress (read: Americans are too stupid to understand why they are about to get screwed by the Dems).

Philly on February 25, 2010 at 3:42 PM

Ryan/Pence 2012

:)

HoosierCon on February 25, 2010 at 3:35 PM
//
Now that has a nice ring to it!:)

ohiobabe on February 25, 2010 at 3:42 PM

Obama’s lips are moving, which means he’s lying.

Philly on February 25, 2010 at 3:43 PM

Paul Ryan, sounding like Sarah Palin

Uh, no. Ryan was sounding like Ryan.

Nichevo on February 25, 2010 at 3:46 PM

Try to stay awake: the President has a healthcare Bill to pass

Obama, looking incongruously glamorous in a crisp white shirt and blue tie – like Jamie Foxx chairing a convention of Pittsburgh cement contractors – gave an Oscar-worthy performance as the Concerned Listener’

J_Crater on February 25, 2010 at 3:49 PM

Obama is discussing reconciliation: What could possibly go wrong? Oh, the part about Americans are not always interested in the inner workings of Congress (read: Americans are too stupid to understand why they are about to get screwed by the Dems).

Philly on February 25, 2010 at 3:42 PM

The flat out elitist arrogance of that statement stunned me!!!! If that doesnt show everyone how out of touch that bozo is with what the people want and who the people are I dont know what will.

Koa on February 25, 2010 at 3:49 PM

I thought the Republicans were stupid to even show up and that they would give away an argument they had already won, snatching defeat from the jaws of victory again like they’ve done so many times before.
I was wrong.
They made the Jugeared Nitwit and his commie henchmen look like fools.

single stack on February 25, 2010 at 3:50 PM

WashJeff on February 25, 2010 at 3:25 PM

Gotcha, and glad we got that cleared up. :)

And, I agree. I know Ryan on camera has said he has no interest in the Presidency, but perhaps over the next few years, we can convince him otherwise. From what I’ve seen of him over the past few months, he’s more than worthy of the office!

capejasmine on February 25, 2010 at 3:51 PM

I know he’s 40 and in the House, but is there really a better choice for 2012 than Ryan?

Lou Budvis on February 25, 2010 at 3:52 PM

Sweet music to my ears. How many Obamateurisms will Ed be able to mine out of today’s proceedings?

Mallard T. Drake on February 25, 2010 at 3:52 PM

Paul Ryan, sounding like Sarah Palin, and clarifying the differences between the two parties and telling Obama he is not listening to the American people.

technopeasant on February 25, 2010 at 2:58 PM

What? Why does someone have to inject Palin into every thread? Paul Ryan doesn’t sound like Sarah Palin.

KeepOhioRed on February 25, 2010 at 3:53 PM

I thought the Republicans were stupid to even show up and that they would give away an argument they had already won, snatching defeat from the jaws of victory again like they’ve done so many times before.
I was wrong.
They made the Jugeared Nitwit and his commie henchmen look like fools.

single stack on February 25, 2010 at 3:50 PM

I think Obama, and company over played their hand here. I admit, I was torn on this issue of Republicans showing, or not showing to this meeting. I think they made a good move this time. They’re making mince meat of this bill, and the Dems know it.

Boehner makes several valid points, and Obama says…I’ll get back to you on those? Meaning….he needs help with the answers. LMAO Gawd, this is our President. It’s like being a teenager, and you kinda go around pretending that weird man isn’t your dad. LOL

capejasmine on February 25, 2010 at 3:53 PM

One other observation I have made and kind of irritates me, is the Presisents constant casual use of everyones first name, It just smacks of amatuerism to me and it seems like its use is intended to take away any legitimicy or propiety to the proceedings or arguments made during. Maybe I missed it, but I dont recall anyone referring to him as Barrack.

Koa on February 25, 2010 at 3:54 PM

Paul Ryan, sounding like Sarah Palin, and clarifying the differences between the two parties and telling Obama he is not listening to the American people.

technopeasant on February 25, 2010 at 2:58 PM

What does this have to do with Sarah Palin?

Look, I like Sarah Palin a lot. But Paul Ryan is the schoolmaster here.

In his brief speech he succinctly educated everyone who was sincerely trying to listen and learn. Ryan is in his own league on this subject because he has actually presented his own detailed, debate-ready, de-federalized health care plan, unlike Sarah Palin.

Edouard on February 25, 2010 at 3:55 PM

I know he’s 40 and in the House, but is there really a better choice for 2012 than Ryan?

Lou Budvis on February 25, 2010 at 3:52 PM

DeMint has been a strong opponent of the government takeover as well. Dare we see a DeMint/Ryan, or Ryan/DeMint ticket in the near future? :D

capejasmine on February 25, 2010 at 3:55 PM

He’s so arrogant that he thought he’d carry it.. NOT
Notice all the old goat Dem’s? Rangal, that Slaughter broad, etc… Talk about a bunch needing to retire.

reshas1 on February 25, 2010 at 3:55 PM

90% of the time, Paul Ryan is wonderful. Should we excuse brain farts like voting to punish AIG employees for getting bonuses?

hawksruleva on February 25, 2010 at 3:56 PM

Obama is the king of “let’s take this offline”. Empty suit.

Philly on February 25, 2010 at 3:58 PM

Maybe I missed it, but I dont recall anyone referring to him as Barrack.

Koa on February 25, 2010 at 3:54 PM

Paul vs. Mr. President doesn’t sound like a fair fight.

The reality, though, is much different. As Rush says, Obama is the least experienced guy in the room. No matter what room he’s in.

hawksruleva on February 25, 2010 at 3:58 PM

All answers do not lie in Washington. However, in Washington all answers are lies.

Lily on February 25, 2010 at 3:59 PM

I hate to say it, but I hand it to Shep for calling BS on the health-care kabuki-fest today. Political theater.

Philly on February 25, 2010 at 4:00 PM

Obama: Paul you make some good points, but let me quickly go. To someone else. If I try and debate you, I’m going to get hammered.

Mallard T. Drake on February 25, 2010 at 4:00 PM

DeMint has been a strong opponent of the government takeover as well. Dare we see a DeMint/Ryan, or Ryan/DeMint ticket in the near future? :D

capejasmine on February 25, 2010 at 3:55 PM

I’m not sure which one should be at the top of the ticket. My gut tells me that people will be ready to elect someone with more experience. And maybe Ryan as VP would be a good way to set up 12-16 years of GOP White House rule.

hawksruleva on February 25, 2010 at 4:01 PM

90% of the time, Paul Ryan is wonderful. Should we excuse brain farts like voting to punish AIG employees for getting bonuses?

hawksruleva on February 25, 2010 at 3:56 PM

I agree, he mistook that issue, but so did some others of the House’s staunchest fiscal conservatives.

Tom McClintock disappointed me by making the same AIG anti-bonus vote too, and they don’t come much more hard-line fiscal conservative than McClintock. I still like both of these guys a lot.

Edouard on February 25, 2010 at 4:02 PM

I just had a sad thought though. I seriously doubt Obama is taking anything the Republicans have to say, seriously. He’s hearing that adult voice Charlie Brown hears, whenever an adult speaks. Whah Whah Whah!

Since he believes he’s thee most brilliant man ever, no way would he ever take their ideas into consideration. His way is the only way because after all….he’s the president.

capejasmine on February 25, 2010 at 4:05 PM

Paul Ryan did sound a lot like Sarah Palin to me. But then again, all of a sudden most Republicans in Washington are. No complaints here though.

mike_NC9 on February 25, 2010 at 4:06 PM

Jason Altmire, blue dog, is on Cavuto. Says none of the bills lowers the cost of health care. If he wants to keep his seat, he’d better hold that thought.

Philly on February 25, 2010 at 4:07 PM

Ryan is going to be the VP pick in 2012.

He’s not going from the House to the White House so young, and if the economy has started showing even mild signs of recovery the ticket will need someone with his knowledge and communication skills out there explaining that a recovery is taking place in spite of, not because of, President Obama.

There simply isn’t anyone, from either chamber, who speaks as well on economic issues as Ryan.

BadgerHawk on February 25, 2010 at 4:12 PM

Did obam forget his teleprompter? The GOP seem to have given him a verbal bitc# clapping.

Well done.

Yakko77 on February 25, 2010 at 4:16 PM

For those who thought today’s summit was a carefully-laid trap for Republicans set by Barack Obama, let me ask this:

I still think it was, but he underestimated his quarry. I have to admit, I was concerned about the Republicans holding their own today. Even McCain refrained from reaching across the aisle and he made some good points. At least it should give the MSM some headaches with the spin, but spin it they will. The Republicans made me proud today.

VaGal on February 25, 2010 at 4:38 PM

I heard right before Paul Ryan spoke, Joe Biden was up and circus music played in the background.

chunderroad on February 25, 2010 at 4:43 PM

All answers do not lie in Washington. However, in Washington all answers are lies.

Lily on February 25, 2010 at 3:59 PM

LOL!

chunderroad on February 25, 2010 at 4:44 PM

Who named only one person in an interview with Chris Wallace and said that Paul Ryan was the smartest cookie in congress.

Who said first “that all the answers don’t lie in Washington?” and it wasn’t Paul Ryan

oldyeller on February 25, 2010 at 4:55 PM

Please put me out of my misery and get Dingell off camera! He’s incoherent. Did he say “Before they were virgins” and if so, what the heck did he mean by that?

Now San Fran Nan, oh my, I need help!

margategop517 on February 25, 2010 at 4:55 PM

Ryan/Pence 2012

:)

HoosierCon on February 25, 2010 at 3:35 PM

Now that has a nice ring to it!:)

ohiobabe on February 25, 2010 at 3:42 PM

I’d vote for that in a heartbeat.

Caiwyn on February 25, 2010 at 5:54 PM

They thought that coming out of Baltimore when the President went in and was mesmerizing and commanding in front of the House Republicans that he could do that again here today

They thought wrong. I said so at the time.

Maybe the GOP sandbagged Obama the first time around?

Exposed might be a better word.

Texas Gal on February 25, 2010 at 5:58 PM

Obama: You just kicked my ass up one end of the street and down the other. I’m going to have to call time.

Mojave Mark on February 25, 2010 at 6:47 PM

I really wanted to say something but I can’t find my dead sister’s teeth!

skeedro on February 25, 2010 at 10:19 PM

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