Members of Congress in both parties don't believe the controversial Medicare reforms drafted by the House Republican Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan will be a part of an eventual agreement to raise the debt ceiling, according to the results of this week's National Journal Congressional Insiders Poll. Democratic Members were near unanimous in saying that the Ryan proposal wouldn't make the cut, but a solid majority of Republicans concurred.
Skeptics within the GOP ranks simply didn't think Democrats in Congress would ever give in on this point. "The Democrats will never give up this issue ahead of the '12 elections and the Ryan plan will never be enacted while Barack Obama is president," said one Republican Congressional Insider. Echoed another, "The Democrats won't bargain away their No. 1 campaign issue, especially with all indications pointing to a stagnant economic recovery."
And one Republican acknowledged that the Democratic opposition to the Ryan plan is probably unshakable. "It's an honest, proven solution but Democrats are too far out on their demonization limb to allow it," said one GOP Congressional Insider.
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At the same time, another suggested that the proposal was becoming a political liability for the party. "Our vulnerable members are already pushing back," said a GOP Congressional Insider. "The only one who can explain the plan is Paul Ryan."