True enough, but also not exactly an answer to the question asked of Tim Ryan, either. The Democratic nominee for Senate in Ohio faced a remarkably tough interview with WFMJ late yesterday, where Ryan insisted that he’s an independent who has agreed with Donald Trump and opposed Joe Biden on particular issues. Lindsay McCoy pressed Ryan on a number of issues involving the so-called Inflation Reduction Act, especially on the IRS expansion that Ryan falsely sloughs off as replacement for retiring workers.
More on that in a moment, though. If Ryan wins the election, McCoy asks, will he support a Joe Biden re-election campaign? It comes near the end of the interview:
Dem. U.S. Senate Candidate Tim Ryan joins us on 21 News at 5 p.m.
— Lindsay McCoy (@LindsayWFMJ) September 9, 2022
That’s a handy way to avoid the specific question. Yes, both parties need generational change, but will Ryan insist on it in his own party? He doesn’t want to answer that question, which his Republican opponent will likely point out.
Expect J.D. Vance to target Ryan’s spin on the IRS soon, too. The IRS did not need an additional $80 billion of funding to replace retiring workers, as I explained last month. Their existing budget covers the costs of that staffing level already. The funds are intended to expand the IRS in order to capture an additional $200 billion in revenue through increased audits and enforcement, precisely what McCoy said. If Democrats wanted to ensure that no one earning under $400K gets audited, they would have voted for the amendment that would have imposed that restriction — because they won’t get that $200 billion from just the ultra-wealthy.
Also, Ryan’s claim that the IRA reduces the deficit by $300 billion a year is also false. It claims to cut overall deficit spending by $300 billion over ten years. (Ryan appears to get this right the second time when he suggests that $300 billion is the total deficit reduction.) And then Biden more than wiped that out with his bailout of Academia, a student-loan debt forgiveness plan that will cost $600 billion at the minimum and as much as a trillion dollars, almost all of which will get spent in the first year.
Supposedly, Democrats want to ride Ryan’s bid to return Ohio to purple-state status:
Democrats are looking to make Ohio a swing state again this midterm cycle as poll numbers show the party has a chance of winning a key Senate race between Democrat Rep. Tim Ryan and Republican J.D. Vance. …
Ryan’s strong candidacy is changing that. Polls show him in a tight race with Vance, the “Hillbilly Elegy” author who Trump backed in the GOP primary.
Various Democratic House candidates are also showing strength — most notably Rep. Marcy Kaptur, who looked like she’d be in trouble after redistricting made her district more Republican. Kaptur is now in a toss-up race with Republican J.R. Majewski, who has come under scrutiny because he was at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
Which polls would that be, though? RCP’s aggregation has Vance out in front in the three polls of likely voters from last month, albeit not by a lot. That may have more to do with Vance’s vulnerabilities and assumptions over the end of Roe, two shaky foundations for this kind of prediction. Mike DeWine leads Nan Whaley in the gubernatorial polling by double digits in every survey thus far, which says a lot more about Ohio’s status as a purple state than the senate race likely will. And with DeWine pulling that kind of a lead, it seems more likely that his coattails will reach down to Vance and some of the House races, too.
Especially if the midterms are a referendum on Joe Biden. And Ryan’s mealy-mouthed response to McCoy’s question won’t help Ryan if that’s the case.