A trio of Republican lawmakers who have strongly hinted at plans to run for president in 2016 are all opposing the budget framework unveiled by Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan.
The opposition is notable also because Ryan himself has been mentioned as a 2016 presidential candidate and was the 2012 Republican vice presidential nominee.
Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Rand Paul (R-KY) have both quickly come out in opposition of the budget deal.
“I can’t support the proposed budget deal,” Rubio said in an email sent out to supporters of his political action committee in the minutes following Ryan’s announcement. “The American people should not be asked to choose between a strong military and responsible budgets that encourage job creation and reduce debt. You deserve better than that. We need a government with less debt and an economy with more good paying jobs, and this budget fails to accomplish both goals, making it harder for more Americans to achieve the American Dream.”
The Ryan-Murray deal proposes total spending of $1.012 trillion in 2014 and $1.014 in 2015 and also includes $63 billion in sequester relief.
Similarly a top aide for Paul said the senator from Kentucky will oppose the deal as well.
“Sen. Paul will oppose the reported cap busting deal,” Paul senior adviser Doug Stafford told Politico on Wednesday. “He opposes increasing spending and undoing the minimal sequester cuts in current law, which weren’t close to enough to begin with.”
Finally a Cruz spokesman signaled that the junior senator from Texas would oppose the deal as well. Cruz had been on a plane ride to the U.S. from South Africa for most of the day so he had not had a chance to thoroughly go over the proposal yet, Cruz spokesman Catherine Frazier told TPM on Wednesday.
“While we haven’t yet reviewed in full detail, the current budget proposal is deeply concerning. We shouldn’t sacrifice the modest 2.4% spending cuts already in law in exchange for a mere possibility of future reductions,” Frazier said in a statement. “While Sen. Cruz supports adjusting the sequester so it doesn’t disproportionately target vital defense spending, we should be taking a serious look at what is actually driving our debt and deficits, not raising spending now for promises of reforms later.”
The opposition by the three senators, all of whom are often mentioned as possible presidential candidates in 2016, will likely act as a speed bump or even a full on obstacle for Ryan and Murray to move their proposal through Congress. Major conservative outside groups like the Club for Growth and Heritage Action for America have also urged lawmakers to oppose the proposal.