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Obama Sends Congress $4.1T Budget Plan 02/09 10:32

   President Barack Obama sent Congress on Tuesday his eighth and final budget, 
proposing to spend a record $4.1 trillion on a number of initiatives. They 
include launching a new war on cancer, combating global warming and fighting 
growing threats from ISIS terrorists.

   WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama sent Congress on Tuesday his 
eighth and final budget, proposing to spend a record $4.1 trillion on a number 
of initiatives. They include launching a new war on cancer, combating global 
warming and fighting growing threats from ISIS terrorists.

   The new spending plan, for the budget year that begins Oct. 1 --- just 3 
months before he leaves office --- is facing heavy fire from Republicans who 
hope to capture the White House. The proposal had dim prospects of winning 
approval in a Republican-controlled Congress.

   In all, Obama's budget would increase taxes by $2.6 trillion over the coming 
decade, nearly double the $1.4 trillion in new taxes Obama sought and failed to 
achieve in last year's budget.

   GOP lawmakers said Obama's proposal to impose a $10 per barrel tax on crude 
oil to bring in an additional $319 billion over the next decade had no chance 
of winning approval in Congress. Obama's budget would use that extra money to 
fund billions of dollars in alternative transportation programs as part of the 
president's efforts to deal with global warming.

   "President Obama will leave office having never proposed a budget that 
balances-ever. This isn't even a budget so much as it is a progressive manual 
for growing the federal government at the expense of hardworking Americans," 
said House Speaker Paul Ryan. "The president's oil tax alone would raise the 
average cost of gasoline by 24 cents per gallon, while hurting jobs and a major 
sector of our economy. Americans deserve better."

   Ryan, R-Wisconsin, pledged that House Republicans would produce a budget 
that does reach balance in coming weeks.

   Even with the increased taxes, Obama's budget projects sharply higher 
deficits in coming years, totaling $9.8 trillion over the next decade. Just 
last summer, Obama's baseline forecast a deficit of $8 trillion over the next 
decade.

   Much of the problem stems from the surge in spending on the government's big 
benefit programs of Social Security and Medicare, which are forecast to soar 
with the retirement of millions of baby boomers.

   The budget sees the economy growing at a 2.6 percent rate this year, though 
administration officials noted that projection was finalized in November, prior 
to the recent stock market slide. Inflation would remain low, registering a 1.5 
percent gain this year.


(KA)


 
 
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