KWTX: Central Texas Congressmen Call Obama's Budget More Of The Same04/10/13
President Barack Obama’s $3.8 trillion spending blueprint, which would raise taxes on the wealthy and trim popular benefit programs including as Social Security and Medicare, is just more of the same, U.S. Reps. Bill Flores, R-Bryan and Roger Williams, R-Weatherford said Wednesday.
The president says the proposed $3.77 trillion budget for 2014 could shrink federal deficits and expand the U.S. economy.
"We can do both,” he said.
The proposal would replace $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts scheduled to take effect over the next 10 years with $1.8 trillion in deficit-reduction measures and it calls for reductions in Social Security and Medicare spending and increases in taxes, mostly on the wealthy.
"It replaces these cuts with smarter ones,” he said.
Mr. Obama also would increase cigarette taxes by 94 cents a pack to pay for expanded preschool programs and he’s calling for $50 billion in public works spending.
Flores says the president’s proposal “leads America down a path of never ending deficits with no efforts to balance the federal budget.”
“While his budget claims to include $1.8 trillion in deficit reduction measures, it actually would only reduce the deficit $119 billion after factoring in budget gimmicks and the $1.2 trillion that would be used to replace the cuts from sequestration,” he said.
Williams called the budget proposal “a joke.”
“I’m a small business owner. I know a budget when I see one, and this is not a budget," he said.
“This administration continues promoting its flawed policies, like its budget that doesn’t balance, that simply do not work. Unemployment still hovers around 8 percent, our nation consistently carries annual trillion dollar deficits, and business owners and families are cutting back, struggling to make ends meet,” he said.
U.S. House Speaker John Boehner said the president deserves some credit for what he called incremental entitlement reforms in his budget proposal, but said he hopes Mr. Obama will not "hold hostage" those reforms in his demand for higher taxes.
He said Mr. Obama got a tax hike as part of the "fiscal cliff" negotiations at the end of last year and that further tax increases were not needed.
Boehner said the two sides should concentrate on what they can agree on and held out hope that in the coming weeks that Republicans and the White House could find common ground on ways on deficit reduction.
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