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Federal Workers Targeted In Paul Ryan's House Spending Plan

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Congressman Paul Ryan unveiled the House budget plan on Tuesday.
Matt Laslo
Congressman Paul Ryan unveiled the House budget plan on Tuesday.

The budget that House Republicans unveiled seeks to cut the national debt by trimming benefits for federal workers.

Tucked inside Chairman Paul Ryan's latest budget are proposals that are sure to raise the hackles of many federal workers in the region. It would freeze federal workers pay until 2015 and force them to contribute more to their retirement plans. It would also cut the federal workforce by 10 percent through attrition.

"Look, they're trying to pick on an easy political target, but the consequences are bad," says Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.).

Van Hollen is the top Democrat on the House Budget Committee. He says the GOP budget seeks to protect the Pentagon from steep spending cuts by slicing deeper into social programs.

"At the expense of kids and our investment in science and research and our infrastructure — things important to help the economy grow — because they slash the category of spending and investment for non-defense," Van Hollen says.

Republicans obviously disagree. Rep. Scott Rigell (R-Va.), a business owner, says that by balancing the nation's books over the next decade, the GOP budget will boost the economy.

"Overall, if the budget is implemented, I think we'd have a much stronger economy, because entrepreneurs, of which I am one, would have a sharply increased confidence that our economy has stabilized," Rigell says.

On Wednesday, Senate Democrats get to respond to the GOP when they unveil their budget, which seeks savings through raising new revenue.

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