Representative Paul Ryan took a shot at Progressivism, a political ideology largely embraced by Liberal Democrats, during a speech at the conservative American Enterprise Institute on Wednesday.
According to a transcript, Ryan weighed Progressivism as “well-intentioned,” but ultimately “arrogant and condescending.”
“Instead of helping people make their own decisions, it makes those decisions for them. It makes Washington the center of power and politicians the center of attention.”
Despite these words, Ryan conceded that the Progressive vision “proved compelling.”
“The Left keeps winning elections,” he continued. “Why? Well, you can see the appeal. In uncertain times, people look for security. Progressives seem to have an answer … the progressive state offers a sense of security. But it’s a false sense of security because government can’t keep all its promises.”
Paul Ryan is the chairman of the House Budget Committee, and despite the 2012 election loss (during which he ran alongside Mitt Romney), Ryan is still one of the GOP’s top spokespeople on fiscal matters.
In March, the House passed the latest incarnation of the Ryan budget, which intended to balance the federal budget in under a decade by slashing spending. Though the academic support for Ryan’s fiscal projections has been questioned by other scholars, Ryan still heavily supports fiscal austerity measures.
He said Wednesday that “we have to stop spending money we don’t have.”
Ryan talked about conservative principles, but charged the Republican Party with repairing its strained relationship with minority voters.
He said that the GOP “must go” into “our inner cities, our barrios and our poor rural communities” in order to “demonstrate our full vision of freedom and community.”
“This vision is our response to progressivism,” he said.
What do you think? Is Progressivism an “arrogant and condescending” political perspective? What do you think of Paul Ryan’s vision for the GOP?