WASHINGTON — GOP leaders are advancing the House Republican budget and its proposed changes to Medicare despite opposition in the Democratic-led Senate by using used a relatively obscure procedural move -- tucking it alongside an unrelated bill that would allow the importation of trophy polar bears.
In considering the sportsmen’s hunting legislation, the House approved a provision Tuesday that essentially “deems” the budget from Rep. Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) passed, even though the blueprint with its tax breaks and cuts to domestic programs was dead on arrival in the Senate.
Republicans said the procedural move was needed to set in motion a 2013 fiscal plan in the absence of an action or agreement with the other chamber. The House voted, 228-184, with no Democrats joining most Republicans, to deem it passed.
Presidential candidate Mitt Romney backs the GOP blueprint, but Democrats have attacked it on the campaign trail, saying it would end the Medicare guarantee for future seniors and slash domestic spending, while giving tax cuts. The budget would give future seniors a set amount to buy health insurance.