Pinellas County's newly elected U.S. Rep. David Jolly summed up the reason he voted against the GOP's Ryan budget proposal today, becoming one of just 12 Republicans to do so:
"I simply kept my word," he said in an interview. And, referring to the number of phone calls he has gotten from media afterward, he quipped: "It's remarkable how newsworthy it is when a member of Congress keeps their promise."....
....The conservative Republican budget plan, designed to lead to a balanced budget, is considered more of a symbolic statement as opposed to legislation actually likely to pass. The Democratic-led Senate has no plans to take it up.
The House's budget plan calls for repealing "Obamacare," cutting taxes and making fundamental changes to Medicare by transforming it into a system in which seniors would use funds to privately purchase health care. All House Democrats voted against it.
Jolly said during his recent campaign that it wouldn't be fair to change the rules on people who have worked for years believing they would have Medicare in the future.
If the change were instituted for younger people, that would be fairer, he said. "We could still get (the budget) to balance, it would just be a longer curve," he said.
Jolly said that before today's vote, he spoke about his position to House Speaker John Boehner, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Ryan himself.
"Obviously they wanted to build as many votes as they could, but we have a caucus that can have these conversations," Jolly said. "They certainly understood my position."