In a major address on the budget, President Obama proposes lowering the deficit
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04/13/11 wire reports including AP
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President Barack Obama is setting a goal of lowering the deficit by $4 trillion dollars over the next 12 years as he wades into the politically volatile debate over the nation's crushing debt.

A week after formally announcing his re-election campaign, Obama is proposing a mix of tax increases already rejected by Republicans, and cuts to safety-net health programs likely to alienate many liberals.

In a speech today at George Washington University, the president proposed cutting defense spending and eliminating tax breaks and loopholes. He criticized the Republican’s vision for the budget.

“Worst of all, this is a vision that says even though America can’t afford to invest in education or clean energy; even though we can’t afford to care for seniors and poor children, we can somehow afford more than $1 trillion in new tax breaks for the wealthy. Think about it. In the last decade, the average income of the bottom 90% of all working Americans actually declined. The top 1% saw their income rise by an average of more than a quarter of a million dollars each. And that’s who needs to pay less taxes? They want to give people like me a two hundred thousand dollar tax cut that’s paid for by asking thirty three seniors to each pay six thousand dollars more in health costs? That’s not right, and it’s not going to happen as long as I’m President.”

Obama's plan falls well short of the more than $5 trillion dollars in cuts over a decade proposed by House Republicans, and dismissed by Democrats as draconian.

Full text of Obama's speech

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