Last night on Hardball with Chris Matthews, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) made the case for preventing President Barack Obama’s impending job killing tax tsunami. When Matthews tried to play gotcha by asking Rep. Ryan “Where will you cut?” to pay for the tax cuts, Rep. Ryan was ready.

First, he cited the budget he produced last year which cut $4.8 trillion in spending (you can read Heritage’s coverage here). Next, Rep. Ryan cited the $1.3 trillion in discretionary spending cuts he enumerated just two months ago. Finally, Rep. Ryan touted his Roadmap for America’s Future as a way to address our long-term deficits caused by Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid (you can read Heritage’s coverage here).

We can cut taxes and still balance our budget by cutting spending. As Heritage Foundation analyst Brian Riedl noted earlier this year,  if the federal government managed to return to the per-household spending level of the Reagan administration, the budget would be balanced by 2012 without any tax hikes. Just returning to the per-household spending levels that existed before the current recession would balance the budget by 2019.