Paul Ryan Calls In Democrats To Help With Bailout of Puerto Rico
April 14, 2016, 07:15 AM
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It's become a standard pattern for Speaker of the House (and possible Republican presidential nominee) Paul Ryan. Triangulate against your own party, speak vaguely about opportunity and growth, and when the rubber hits the road, side with the Democrats.

It was Paul Ryan who rode to the rescue of President Obama, pushing Republicans to award the President fast-track authority to approve the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement which guts Americans jobs and serves as a back door for more Third World immigration. Now Ryan is hoping Democrats will return the favor so he can shovel American taxpayers' money to Puerto Rico.

Congress’ bid to rescue Puerto Rico from its debt crisis is turning into yet another test for House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, and the early signs are not good, with one conservative lawmaker accusing leaders of gagging rank-and-file Republicans to keep them from scuttling the relief package...

If Mr. Ryan does turn to Democrats to pass the bill, he will face the same complaints that doomed his predecessor, John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican. But Democrats said he has no choice at this point.

“If it’s going to pass, it’s going to be bipartisan, and an overwhelming number of Democrats have to vote for it — period,” said Rep. Raul M. Grijalva of Arizona, the ranking Democrat on the Natural Resources Committee.

Analysts say Puerto Rico’s woes are the result of years of overborrowing and spending and the steady exit of young, working-age residents who could help turn around the island’s fortunes. To keep itself afloat, the island is swiping money from pensions and shifting funds from one pool of creditors to satisfy others.

[Paul Ryan faces conservative rebellion over Puerto Rico 'bailout,' needs Democrats' helpby Tom Howell Jr., Washington Times, April 13, 2016]

Obviously, the solution for irresponsible policy on a massive scale is for Americans to give those responsible even more money. This must be that "fiscal conservatism" and "limited government" we hear so much about. And doesn't it give you a warm feeling inside when great conservatives like Ryan are working with noble patriots like Raul Grijalva?

The Democrats and the pro-bailout Republicans are still fighting over some details of the policy. The Republicans (as you can probably expect) want to lower wages on the island and don't want to protect pensions. The Democrats do. The Republicans essentially want to take some measures to cut expenditures while the Democrats want to keep things going the way they are.

Politically of course, this is idiotic. Even if the Republicans manage to get their version through, they will take the responsibility for imposing cuts on ordinary Puerto Ricans. The Democrats get to pose as champions of the little guy. On a smaller scale, it's the kind of arrangement which has made Angela Merkel (and more broadly, Germany) hated in European nations plagued by debt, such as Greece.

A better solution would be to just give Puerto Rico independence so we don't have to deal with supporting this liability. ¡Viva Puero Rico Libre!