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Count Paul Ryan out of the presidential race, this time. Rep. Ryan (R-WI) has been floated as a possible presidential contender in an already overcrowded and strange field. But, the congressman says it isn’t happening.
Ryan issued a statement on Monday stating he appreciates supporters urging him to seek the 2012 nomination, but he hasn’t changed his mind about staying out of the race. Ryan is perhaps best known for his budget plan that would slash federal spending on various programs, including Medicare.
Ryan chairs the House Budget Committee. In his statement, he says he hopes the GOP will nominate a candidate committed to an agenda that “restores the promise and prosperity of our exceptional nation.”
Although it still appears that the GOP is searching for the one favorite candidate that could be the “savior.” Many thought Texas Governor Rick Perry would be that candidate but his new campaign has already run into a series of problems. Rumors last week surfaced stating that New Jersey governor Chris Christie would jump into the fold, but Christie’s camp has denied any plants to enter the race.
Meanwhile Rep. Ryan is trying to create more tax loopholes for his largest donors. For months, Ryan has argued that closing tax loopholes would help to pay for his proposed tax cuts in his budget plan.
“We’re talking about keeping revenues where they are, but having a better tax system to collect those revenues with an eye on economic growth and job creation,” he said during an April interview on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered.”
He added, “You have to remember, the people in the top tax brackets are the ones who enjoy most of the loopholes and deductions.”
But, his record reflects a different attitude in general. Since Ryan was elected to Congress in 1998, he has tried to create an array of special loopholes specific for his top contributors. For example, S.C. Johnson & Son is one of Ryan’s biggest donors.
Ryan introduced two bills in May 2005 that would have granted the company special exemptions from tariffs. Specifically, his bills sought to suspend duties for imported components of “unique air freshener products … assembled by S.C. Johnson in the United States,” Ryan said during floor remarks at the time. Neither bill advanced.
A year later, Ryan put forward another bill to reduce the duty on S.C. Johnson cleaning appliances “capable of dispensing cleaning solution into a tub or shower enclosure using a button-activated, battery-powered piston pump controlled by a microchip.” That bill didn’t move.
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