U.S. Representative from Texas and Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul took a step away from Republican Party orthodoxy on Friday, as he stood apart with only three other Republican members of Congress voting against the attack on Medicare.
The vote was on the 2012 budget, proposed by Representative Paul Ryan. The budget included a plan to completely destroy Medicare.
Ron Paul voted no. So did Walter Jones, David McKinley, and Dennis Rehberg. All the other House Republicans failed to protect Medicare, even though they had spent most of last year complaining that Barack Obama’s health care reform should be repealed because it might have created an abstract threat to Medicare.
So, is Ron Paul all of a sudden an advocate of effective government programs to serve American citizens? No, Congressman Paul’s vote against Paul Ryan’s budget wasn’t really a stand for Medicare. Instead, Paul declared that Paul Ryan’s budget didn’t contain enough spending cuts.
Eliminating Medicare isn’t sufficient to satisfy Ron Paul’s goals for reducing the power of American government. Paul explained that he thinks that the rest of the social safety net has to go too: “Keeping those promises is, sadly, just not one of our options in the long run. Better to admit the nanny state is coming to an end.”