Paul Ryan Fires Back At Newt: With Friends Like These …

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May 16, 2011 7:21 a.m.

Paul Ryan defended his struggling Medicare proposal from its toughest Republican criticism yet on Monday, rebutting Newt Gingrich’s claim that it was “right-wing social engineering.”

“With allies like that, who needs the left?” Ryan told conservative radio host Laura Ingraham.

Gingrich lit into the plan on Meet The Press yesterday, comparing it to Obamacare and warning Republicans it constituted “radical change from the right” that would be “too big a jump” for the country.“Hardly is that social engineering and radical,” Ryan said on Monday. “What’s radical is kicking the can down the road.”

A spokesman for Newt has since walked back his comments a bit, emphasizing areas of agreement with Ryan’s proposal. Ryan will get a chance to address the Medicare issue in detail today as he delivers a speech in Chicago on the topic later in the afternoon.

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