Dateline: Wednesday, November 9, 2016
Rarely has a presidential election turned so decisively on one speech, much less one by somebody other than the candidates. For posterity, I will include that speech by House Speaker Paul Ryan in its entirety:
"Thank you Donald (or Ben, or Jeb, or Marco, or ... it didn't matter) for inviting me to join you in Columbus on this beautiful October day. The only better day this Fall will be next Saturday in Madison when my Badgers take on the Buckeyes for the Big 10 lead. Today is important; that will be historic.
"Since the Republican convention in July I have spent a lot of time with Donald (or Ben, or Jeb, or Marco, or ...) discussing the state of the economy and what can be done to restore growth and guarantee the future of the American Dream. I have also had many discussions with the leaders of the House. I would like to share the shape of our consensus.
"The Founding Fathers, in their wisdom, placed responsibility for originating legislative budgets in the House where our two year terms keep the members most responsive to the will of the people. The American people, in their wisdom, have given us Republicans a strong majority in the House, and promise to do so for years to come. I am humbled that the members of the House have elected me to be their leader.
"Whether it is Divine Providence or sheer coincidence, most of my experience has been in the economics of the federal government. I have been Chairman of the House Budget Committee which deals with the allocation of funds between departments and all spending bills. I have also been chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee which is responsible for the tax code, Social Security, and Medicare. I have debated Obamacare and the Stimulus Plan with President Obama. I have been the party's vice-presidential nominee, spending considerable time travelling the nation with one of our great business minds, Mitt Romney. I think it is fair to say, without any false modesty, that nobody in the country knows more about the policy and politics of the federal budget, the tax code, entitlements, and the corrosive effects of deficits than I do. I have put forward specific proposals based on conservative principles in all of these areas.
"During the past eight years we have seen the the national debt balloon to $19 trillion dollars, the level of workforce participation decline to the lowest in a half century, the income of the average American family fall by $2000, the debt of our students reach smothering levels, and the security of our seniors' retirement put in jeopardy. Republicans have had answers, but the president has resisted any cooperation in finding solutions.
"In this November's election, the American people have a clear choice. In 2017 and for the next four years, the Congress will bring forward legislation leading to balanced budgets, reform of the complex and counter-productive tax code, ensuring the preservation of Social Security and Medicare, and providing opportunity for economic growth for all Americans.
"If Donald (or Ben, or Jeb, or Marco, or ...) is president, those proposals will be developed in cooperation with with the chief executive and they will be signed and effectively implemented. On the other hand, if Hillary Clinton is president, we will face another four years of threatened vetoes, gridlock, and national economic decline.
"Rarely has the choice been so clear. Rarely has an incoming president been so able to design, pass, and implement comprehensive and thoughtful legislation to reinvigorate the American economy. We in the House stand ready to support Donald (or Ben, or Jeb, or Marco, or ...). We urge the American voters to do likewise."
So began the rout.
This week's bonus is a brief video of Marco Rubio discussing the the deployment of a few special operations troops to Syria - talking about the issue, not triangulating between Obama and Trump.
bill bowen - 11/6/15