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Rehberg votes against GOP budget plan


U. S. Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont., broke with his party and rejected a proposed $6 trillion spending cut plan that was approved on a near party-line vote on Friday.

"I simply won't support any plan until I know for a fact that Montana's seniors will be protected." Rehberg said in a release.

Most Republicans voted for the plan, which was proposed by Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis. Every Democrat voted against it. It was approved in the GOP-dominated House, 235-193, in Friday's vote. Only three other Republicans, including Ron Paul of Texas, voted against the proposal.

While Rehberg said he favors many of the aspects of the Ryan plan, "there are still too many unanswered questions with regard to Medicare reform."

"I simply won't support any plan until I know for a fact that Montana's seniors will be protected," he said.

"It's being rushed through with little to no public input," he said. "That's just plain wrong."

Rehberg chairs the House Labor, Health and Human Services Subcommittee, and he said in that capacity, "I intend to craft a common sense funding bill that works for Montana and that incorporates input from Montanans. "

Politico, a website that concentrates on political news, speculated that Rehberg voted against the plan because of his upcoming challenge to Democratic Sen. Jon Tester.

Rehberg, unlike many senatorial candidates, has no opponent in the Republican primary, thus doesn't have to worry about his conservative flank.

Political analyst David Catanese noted that Rehberg has been criticized by Democrats for his comments comparing Pell Grants to "21st century welfare."


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