Archive for Sunday, April 17, 2011

Obama: GOP budget is ‘wrong for America’

April 17, 2011


— President Barack Obama is promoting his new deficit-reduction plan by drawing sharp contrasts with a House Republican budget that he says offers a vision that “is wrong for America.”

In his weekly radio and Internet address Saturday, Obama contended that Republicans want to dismantle venerable safety net programs and cut taxes for the wealthy at the expense of students paying for college and older adults relying on Medicare.

“To restore fiscal responsibility, we all need to share in the sacrifice — but we don’t have to sacrifice the America we believe in,” Obama said.

The criticism echoed his speech Wednesday in which he outlined a $4 trillion deficit-reduction plan over 12 years. It’s a goal, he said, that he can achieve through spending cuts, changes in government health care programs and tax increases.

Obama’s message represents his clearest attempt to place ideological distance with Republicans after months spent negotiating a compromise six-month spending bill that trimmed more than $38 billion from the government.

Obama plans to continue his plan’s pitch throughout the upcoming week, holding town halls in Northern Virginia Tuesday and in Palo Alto, Calif., and Reno, Nev., later in the week.

While Obama tries to cast the debate in his own terms, his attention to fiscal discipline signals a watershed in national politics. After two years devoted to priming an anemic economy with new spending and passing an overhaul of health care, Congress and the White House are beginning a debate about how to tame long-term deficits and a crushing debt of more than $14 trillion.


DeaconBlue 7 years, 2 months ago

Obama is right on this one. In 2010 55% of americans did not work. 45% did. These millions of takers need to be taken care of by the makers. GOP cannot abandon these takers else they will become Tea Party like and riot in the streets. Tea Party riots will lead Obama to direct FEMA to implement PDD 51, AR 210-35, Rex 84 or Project Megiddo.

Obama is right on.

Scott Drummond 7 years, 2 months ago

Define "work."

Are employers who profit from the labor of others included in your group of "takers?"

How many of the claimed 55% of Americans who did not work are children, stay at home moms, disabled and 65+ years of age?

Liberty275 7 years, 2 months ago

The parasite-in-chief will be voted out of office in 2012. Good riddance.

Liberty275 7 years, 2 months ago

Trump is a joke. I'd vote for Palin if she followed her libertarian instincts, quit pandering to the wingnuts on the right and served 3 terms in the senate.

Anything would be better than the combination of socialist and used car salesman we have now. Hilary would have been a better president than obama. I may not agree with her on many issues, but she would have been more decisive and honest.

Richard Heckler 7 years, 2 months ago

Obama made the right choice in defending Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, and pushing instead for healthcare reform — even putting negotiating drug prices on the table. He again refused to renew the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy — a pledge he has made and broken in the past. He also called for cuts in a defense budget that has contributed 2 out of 3 dollars in increased discretionary spending since 2001.

Yet in many ways his approach continues to legitimize the inside-the-beltway consensus that spending cuts must lead the way toward achieving fiscal responsibility. Just as the Simpson-Bowles Commission proposes, for every $1 raised by closing tax loopholes on wealthy Americans, the President proposes $2 in spending cuts. Two-thirds of those cuts would come from education, health and other social programs, while only one-third comes from the military budget. While the president speaks eloquently of his vision of "shared sacrifice," in reality it is still a budget that hits the poor and the middle-class hardest while wealthy Americans and the military are asked to sacrifice far less.

An alternative approach that deserves more attention is the "People's Budget" offered by the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC). It will be introduced in the House on Thursday and it is the strongest rebuke — in the form of an amendment — to the unconscionable "Ryan Budget" for FY 2012. It's a budget that gives the people — according to poll after poll — exactly what they want (something which shouldn't be a rarity in a healthy, vibrant democracy).

Richard Heckler 7 years, 2 months ago

Our PEOPLES BUDGET is solid. We have third-party validation from Professor Sachs to many other economists, Professor Irons, as well.

So we feel very strongly about our PEOPLES BUDGET, and we want it to be on the table.

We deal with the deficit reduction, and we do it within a 10-year period.

We deal with job creation in a substantial way, to put people back to work in this country.

We protect the middle class and the poor by protecting their programs and increasing job training and early childhood education.

We cut military spending in a significant way. The key to that, getting us out of Afghanistan and out of Iraq.

And we take care—we deal with healthcare by reintroducing the public option, which could save up to $68 billion a year from providing a competitive choice for the American people.

We have tracked every public opinion poll.

The American people want gas and oil subsidies to be cut.

They want the rich and the corporations to pay taxes.

We can take a bold step that the American people want.

JUAN GONZALEZ: Well, Congressman, you mentioned reintroducing the public option in terms of healthcare as being one of the ways that you would reduce the budget deficit. But could you point out maybe some of the key—what you consider to be the key points that differentiate your budget from both those of the Republicans, of Ryan, as well as of the President?

REP. RAÚL GRIJALVA: I think the key point is that American people said preserve Social Security, invest in education, preserve Medicare and Medicaid, invest in job training, and we reflect that in our budget. Ryan’s budget does not reflect that. And in fact, even some of the administration’s initiatives go counter to that feeling among the American people.

What we do, very specifically,

Richard Heckler 7 years, 2 months ago

The Congressional Progressive Caucus People's Budget proposal is gaining some big-time momentum, but we need to up the ante even further if we're going to get this the mainstream attention it deserves.

The fight over the 2012 budget begins yesterday. If The People's Budget is to advance, we must act now.

This is the only budget that does everything this country needs:

* Creates good-paying jobs
* Fully maintains our social safety net
* Invests in education
* Ends our costly wars
* Closes the tax loopholes that have made offshoring jobs profitable
* Ends oil and gas subsidies that pollute our country at taxpayer expense
* Creates a national infrastructure investment bank to help us make intelligent investments for the future

This budget represents the future we believe in as Americans, and the CPC really needs our support to keep it on the front burner. Please call your member of Congress, now. The debate and vote on The People's Budget is scheduled to take place early Friday morning.

This is one of those occasions we all hope we'll live to see: We really can make a difference right now if we speak up loudly with one voice.

The People's Budget represents not just common sense; it represents the will of the American people. Click here to take action.

The People's Budget is getting mainstream attention, but it won't hold that attention unless we speak up about how important our values really are. These aren't just words on a page or numbers in a table—these dollars and cents mean lives helped or hurt, people succeeding or falling by the wayside, and families lifted up or dragged down. This is about America.

Flap Doodle 7 years, 2 months ago

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George Lippencott 7 years, 2 months ago

There is a new feature on the president’s web page – an accounting for how our tax money is spent. I used it and determined that 54% of my tax payments go for social programs not counting Medicare and Social Security. While I agree that we should raise taxes on the rich as a matter of equity; no amount of tax increase on the rich will allow this level of largess to continue. Remember it only addresses the taxes we pay – it does not address the trillion dollars we are paying out but not taxing to obtain.

In fairness to all, for our largess we need to

  1. Figure out exactly who is getting what from whom. (GAO is working at Federal Level)
  2. Consolidate all those programs so that recipients can find all that is available and providers can be held accountable
  3. Focus those programs to support a return to personal responsibility for those we can – discourage dependency.
  4. Define a meaningful long-term program we can afford for those who can never be fully reasonable for themselves.

We also need as a matter of equity to set an upper bound on taxes so that government does not continue to take more and more from the productive portion of our economy.

I love the abstract arguments that are being made. The Republicans want to return to a budget that spends about 20% of GDP as we have traditionally paid. The Democrats think they should be able to tax 24% of GDP (current expenditures) without accounting for who would pay the difference. No details but lots of ideology!

Stephen Roberts 7 years, 2 months ago

Personally both sides are wrong. I think you need to have both budgets side by side & split the differences between both budgets.

mloburgio 7 years, 2 months ago

FLASHBACK: In 2001 Address, Bush Said The National Debt Would Be Paid Off In Ten Years But in his first major address to Congress, President George W. Bush promised that his “responsible” budget would pay off the national debt in ten years:

My budget has funded a responsible increase in our ongoing operations. It has funded our Nation’s important priorities. It has protected Social Security and Medicare. And our surpluses are big enough that there is still money left over.

Many of you have talked about the need to pay down our national debt. I listened, and I agree. We owe it to our children and our grandchildren to act now, and I hope you will join me to pay down $2 trillion in debt during the next 10 years. At the end of those 10 years, we will have paid down all the debt that is available to retire. That is more debt repaid more quickly than has ever been repaid by any nation at any time in history.

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