On Tuesday, House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) released his budget for the federal government in 2013. Dubbed the Path to Prosperity, the plan trims spending, reforms taxes and looks to market-based reforms to health care entitlement programs—all key elements of The Heritage Foundation’s Saving the American Dream budget plan.

The Ryan budget is a tremendous improvement over liberal plans, including President Obama’s 2013 proposal, say Alison Fraser, who directs Heritage’s Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies, and Patrick Louis Knudsen, a senior Heritage budget expert. The Senate has not released a budget proposal in several years.

» Ryan will be speaking about his plan at The Heritage Foundation on Thursday morning at 9:00 a.m. Eastern. Watch live online.

A successful federal budget, Fraser and Knudsen argue, should:

  • Cut spending sharply and quickly
  • Begin decisive entitlement reform
  • Avoid tax hikes
  • Ensure a strong national defense
  • Include pro-growth tax reforms
  • Move swiftly towards a balanced budget

According to Fraser and Knudsen, “Ryan’s budget is not perfect. Few consensus political documents can be.”

Nonetheless, the plan includes several strong elements and provides a stark contrast with the liberal alternatives, Fraser and Knudsen write:

President Obama’s budget, which relies on enormous tax hikes, shirks any solutions to the twin crises of excessive spending and soaring debt, and never comes close to balance.

Ryan has put forth a serious plan worthy of serious consideration. His budget lays out substantive policy choices, cutting spending, reforming entitlements, and avoiding tax hikes. It also outlines a tax reform that would strengthen the economy and by implication further strengthen government finances through organic revenue growth. It represents real progress toward tackling the nation’s fiscal and economic challenges. Congress and the President should now move toward a real consensus that achieves all the Ryan plan suggests and more.

Ryan’s budget, they continue, “shares the same basic philosophy of The Heritage Foundation’s budget plan, Saving the American Dream.” Our plan cuts spending and balances the budget in ten years—and not at the expense of our men and women in uniform. Moreover, it implements neededed reforms to entitlement programs and updates the tax code to make it simple and fair.

Tell us in the comments: What do you think of Paul Ryan’s budget proposal?

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