Daily Caller While House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, who was tapped Saturday
by Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney to be his running mate, is most widely known for his stands on economic issues, he has also staked out a foreign policy vision during his congressional career, one centered around the importance of American engagement in the world.
“Ryan has gotten briefed on and thought about foreign policy for years,” Elliott Abrams, a former deputy national security adviser for President George W. Bush, told The Daily Caller.Ryan most prominently laid out his foreign policy vision in a June 2011 speech to the Alexander Hamilton Society in Washington. In the speech, Ryan tied the need to fix America’s long-term budgetary woes to its ability to lead the world internationally.
“The briefings I have done, about the Middle East, found him knowledgeable and of course very smart — and a Republican. His criticisms of Obama foreign policy are very much in the Republican mainstream, as are his foreign policy instincts. He believes in America and America’s role in the world. His specialty may be the economy but I think voters will quickly find out that he brings the same attention and thoughtfulness to foreign affairs.”
“If there’s one thing I could say with complete confidence about American foreign policy, it is this: Our fiscal policy and our foreign policy are on a collision course,” he said. “And if we fail to put our budget on a sustainable path, then we are choosing decline as a world power.”While some deficit hawks seek to take an ax to the defense budget, Ryan suggested in the speech that defense cuts were far from the primary cause of America’s budgetary problems.
“Defense spending has shrunk as a share of the federal budget from about 39 percent to just under 16 percent — even as we conduct an ambitious global war on terrorism,” he said. “The fact is, defense consumes a smaller share of the national economy today than it did throughout the Cold War.” (RELATED: Media Matters super PAC releases opposition research report on Paul Ryan)