Ryan sips $350 bottle of wine amid budget talks

U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Janesville, who’s come under fire for his efforts to end the current Medicare system and turn it over to for-profit insurance companies, was caught sipping a $350 bottle of Pinot Noir at a swank Capitol Hill eatery.

It was an embarrassing moment for Ryan, who’s leading the charge in Congress against White House efforts to reduce the budget by a combination of entitlement cuts and returning taxes on those earning over $1 million a year closer to the level they stood under President Bill Clinton (they would still remain lower than that under the president’s plan).

Susan Feinberg, an associate business professor at Rutgers, was at Bistro Bis celebrating her birthday when she recognized Ryan dining with two other men whom she presumed were lobbyists. Feinberg told Talking Points Memo that the three men were “droning on loudly during the evening that liberals think that if you’re a millionaire, you have done something wrong.”

When she noticed the wine they were drinking and saw the price on the menu, she was outraged. Her anger grew when the three men ordered a second bottle.

TPM reports that Feinberg approached the table as she was leaving the restaurant, determined to give Ryan a piece of her mind. She said that Ryan replied, “Is that how much it was?” when she mentioned the price of the wine.

“F—- her,” said one of the other men, who stood up in a menacing way, according to Feinberg’s account.

Read the whole story at TalkingPointsMemo.com.