Obama Will Go Head-To-Head With GOP On 2012 Federal Budget
Firing their first salvoes on the Sunday morning political talk shows, Republican lawmakers have begun the attack on President Obama's soon-to-be-proposed 2012 federal budget.
The plan won't be released until Monday, but Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) looked into the future on Meet the Press Sunday: "He's going to present a budget tomorrow that will continue to destroy jobs by spending too much, borrowing too much and taxing too much."
Budget director Jacob Lew trotted out a preview that reportedly shies away from making major reductions in Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and defense spending. The spending cuts that made the final proposal are said to save the government more than $1 trillion over the next 10 years.
That includes a five-year freeze on discretionary spending, and cuts to clean water programs, home heating assistance and federal Pell education grants. ABC News reported these programs to be "sacred to liberals."
The Pell grant changes would eliminate interest subsidies for graduate and professional students, and place additional eligibility limits for all students.
Several proposed spending increases (on education and infrastructure) raised red flags with Republicans who say they want to cut expenditures across the board.
"We're broke," Boehner said, reflecting a party line at programs that Democrats call "investments" and Republicans call "entitlements."
The GOP is also upset that Obama won't cut from Medicaid and Social Security, part of the recommendation made by his bipartisan deficit commission in December.
Reuters writes: "The deficit is forecast to reach $1.48 trillion this fiscal year, or 9.8 percent of U.S. GDP. This would be down from 10.0 percent of GDP in 2010, but still very high for the United States on a historical basis."
Obama's proposal for the 2011 fiscal year was never passed by Congress.