Capito votes for Ryan plan

WASHINGTON – A budget approved by the House of Representatives on Thursday recognizes the danger of the unsustainable spending by the federal government, a West Virginia representative said.

The Paul Ryan budget plan was adopted 221-207 mostly on party lines. Republicans favored the proposal from the Wisconsin representative, including Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, Republicans from West Virginia. Rep. David McKinley, R-W.Va., and Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., voted against.

“The House Republican budget is a serious plan that recognizes the danger of the federal government’s unsustainable spending,” McKinley said.

“The budget that passed the House presented the best framework for reigning in government spending and avoiding tax increases for West Virginia families and small businesses, while at the same time protecting current and near seniors from changes to retirement programs,” Capito said.

The budget is a step in the right direction and includes the following initiatives, McKinley said:

* Balances the budget in 10 years.

* Makes reforms to welfare, food stamps and Medicaid.

* Focuses on duplicative and wasteful programs as identified by the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

* Defunds Obamacare.

“While this plan is better than other options put forward, which raise taxes and still fail to balance our budget, I have concerns with some issues of vital importance to the First District, which were not adequately addressed,” McKinley said.

They are:

* The House budget includes the Keystone pipeline and opens federal lands to energy exploration, but is silent on coal ash legislation and value of research in fossil fuels.

* The budget leaves in place $716 billion in cuts to Medicare.

* The budget lacks reform to foreign aid, but will hurt America’s investments in its own infrastructure.

* The budget fails to adequately protect agencies and programs important to the First District, including the FBI and National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, from disproportionate cuts.

“The House and Senate budgets have become prime examples of this dysfunctional gridlock. I came to Congress to get something done, not send political messages. Any solution to the challenges this country faces, whether it is deficit reduction, tax reform, or reforms to welfare or Medicare, will need to be bipartisan in nature. Unfortunately both the House and Senate budgets fail that fundamental test,” McKinley said.

“Once each side passes its respective budget, House and Senate representatives should come together at the negotiating table in a bipartisan fashion. At that time I hope Republicans and Democrats agree on a compromise that addresses the unsustainable spending by the federal government and provides fiscal certainty for our families and businesses. Once a bipartisan compromise is achieved I will evaluate it for my support.”

Capito said the budget resolution “puts our country back on the path toward fiscal responsibility and economic growth.”