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Ryan, Issa Lay Out Priorities for Committees

Republican Reps. Paul Ryan (Wis.) and Darrell Issa (Calif.) shared their plans for the 112th Congress on Sunday as they anticipate stepping into the chairmans role on two House committees.

Ryan, the ranking member of the Budget Committee, discussed budget cuts, the Federal Reserve and the health care overhaul, while Issa named some of the subjects he would like the Oversight and Government Reform Committee to investigate if he is elevated from ranking member to chairman. The two appeared on Fox News Sunday.

Ryan said a GOP proposal to cut non-defense discretionary spending by $100 billion in the first year is actually quite modest considering the pickle we are in.

We have had spending on a gusher, he said. And if borrowing and spending and taxing and spending actually created jobs and produced prosperity, we wouldnt have all this joblessness. We wouldnt have this lame economy we have right now.
Issa insisted that Congress must start pushing back against competitive grants sought by the administration to save money. Thats where we give a slush fund, just like the stimulus, to the president. And then they come up with who they like and where they like them and they issue the money, he said, adding that Congress needs to start knowing the identities of grant recipients in advance.

The Federal Reserves announcement last week that it will buy $600 billion more in government bonds is a big mistake, Ryan said, adding, I think the upsides are very low.

Look, we have Congress doing tax and spend, borrow and spend. Now we have the Federal Reserve doing print and spend, he said, arguing that the countrys loose monetary policy and low interest rates are going to create inflation and interest rate problems.

What the Fed is basically doing is theyre trying to bail out the fact that our fiscal policy is so bad, Ryan said. The Fed should focus on keeping our money sound and honest, not on doing this, which I think is going to give us a big inflation problem down the road.

He called the health care overhaul a fiscal and economic train wreck for our country and for the health care system itself, saying Republicans will do everything we can to try and repeal and replace this thing. He outlined three tactics the House GOP will use: committee oversight to shed light to all the problems theyre going to be bringing in with this, attempts to defund portions of the law over expected presidential vetoes and court challenges.

You cant fully repeal and replace this law until you have a new president and a better Senate, Ryan said. And thats probably in 2013, but thats before the law fully kicks in in 2014.

Issa has pledged to step up his panels use of subpoenas. Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace presented a list of controversies to Issa, asking whether he would pursue investigations.

Issa said he would help get the facts on allegations that the New Black Panthers intimidated voters, but he added that the matter falls under the jurisdiction of the Judiciary Committee.

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