Obama, President, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, State of the Union
President Obama lays out latest budget proposal
By Curt Cramer

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Tuesday, Obama sent Congress a $3.9 trillion budget, encompassing most of his policies he wished for that have been long ignored in both his terms as President so far.

The proposal calls for eliminations on tax breaks for hedge-fund managers, self-employed professionals, U.S. multinational companies, and other high earners, who instead are being asked to pay a “fair share tax” which would go back into funding programs and initiatives he laid out.


Programs he detailed include:

$76 billion over the next decade for early childhood education, which would financed through higher taxes on tobacco.

$70 billion for highway construction throughout the US, financed by taxing the accumulated foreign profits of multinational corporations.

A $60 billion expansion of the earned-income tax credit (one of the government’s largest and most important anti-poverty programs) for working adults without children, financed through elimination of tax breaks for hedge-fund managers and self-employed professionals.

And lastly, it would provide $56 billion in just the next year into what Obama calls the “Opportunity, Growth and Security Initiative,” aimed to benefit agencies affected by cuts in the recent Sequester. Agencies like the Pentagon, preschool programs, the National Institutes of Health, climate research, job training programs and a new parental-leave benefit — much of it aimed at providing support to a struggling middle class according to the Washington Post.

“As a country we’ve got to make a decision if we’re going to protect tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans or if we’re going to make smart investments necessary to create jobs and grow our economy, and expand opportunity for every American”, the President said Tuesday at a speech at the Powell Elementary School in D.C.

While many Republicans scoffed at the budget plans claiming it would bust limits set for the next year, Obama seemed to make it clear it was not about how fast the programs would be initiated, but how they would be set over time.

With more than $1 trillion in tax increases over the next decade, Obama wishes to make a major dent in projected budget deficits. For next year, the White House forecasts a deficit of $564 billion, or 3.1% of the economy. By 2024, Obama sees the deficit falling to 1.6%, the smallest annual deficit since 2007, before the Great Recession dealt a terrible blow to government finances (Washington Post). This would reduce borrowing greatly, putting debt back into outside investors, and off of the US itself.

Congress will address the federal debt limit again later in March.

-Curt Cramer(@CurtisRemarc)