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BUDGET BATTLE House Passes Rep. Ryan’s Budget William B. Plowman / AP Photo, William B. Plowman

House Passes Rep. Ryan’s Budget

The House has passed an aggressive 2012 budget plan that would slash the federal budget and eliminate Medicare and Medicaid as we know them. On a strict party-line vote on Friday—only four Republicans opposed the plan—the chamber sent the bill to the Senate, 235-193. Don’t get too excited, though: Majority Leader Harry Reid has pledged it will die there. The bill would cut the deficit by $5.3 trillion over the next decade and transform Medicare into a voucher program and Medicaid into a series of block grants to states. Even if it is doomed, the vote is the opening salvo for what promises to be a lengthy legislative maneuvering season as both parties position themselves for the 2012 election.

April 15, 2011 10:56 AM