Before he went on Spring Break, Representative Billy Long voted for Representative Paul Ryan's budget proposal. In an attempt to explain his vote for Ryan's proposal, Long declared, "don't believe what you read in the paper" and that something needed to be done because the system was designed when people only lived to be “48 years old.”
This is a May 9, 2011 LTE to StLToday.com:
Republican Rep. Paul Ryan's 2012 budget proposal was one of the most brutal attacks on the social safety net in decades and Rep. Billy Long of Missouri's 7th District, along with the majority of other Republicans in the House, joined him by voting for it.It is worth noting that under the Ryan proposal he voted for, Long will receive both Social Security and Medicare benefits.
Paul Krugman, in a New York Times Op-Ed piece dated April 7, 2011, called Rep. Ryan's budget bill both "ludicrous" and "cruel." "Ludicrous" because the budget projections were pure fantasy, "cruel" because it proposed massive spending cuts for programs that mainly help children, the poor and the elderly, while slashing taxes for corporations and the ultra-rich.
One of the main programs targeted by the Ryan budget was Medicare, which under the proposal would be destroyed in all but name, and replaced by a voucher program for seniors who'd be dumped into the private insurance market. And if the vouchers didn't cover the cost of insurance, too bad.
I challenge everyone to hold Rep. Billy Long and others who voted for this budget accountable by calling them and demanding an answer for why they voted yes. Even the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office reported that the Ryan budget would lead to bigger deficits and more debt. I also challenge Rep. Long to hold a public, advertised town hall meeting to explain himself. Rep. Long's Springfield office number is 417-889-1800 and in Washington it's 202-225-6536. For more information refer to https://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/08/opinion/08krugman.html?_r=1.
Richard G. Green