President Barack Obama will send a multitrillion budget to Congress on Feb. 14, administration spokesman Kenneth Baer said, setting up a conflict over spending that may dominate a divided Congress for the rest of the year.
The budget for fiscal 2012 is a political document that will put into precise language the administration’s priorities for increasing economic growth and creating jobs. Republicans who campaigned on promises to slash spending took control of the U.S. House of Representatives and reduced the Democrats’ majority in the Senate.
“The sooner Washington ends its dependence on more spending, the sooner our economy will see real growth,” Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin said in yesterday’s weekly Republican radio address.
Obama says he’s ready to trim or eliminate programs, specifically mentioning community action grants to local governments, to allow spending increases for his priorities.
“We want to cut with a scalpel as opposed to a chain saw,” Obama said in an interview broadcast online by Google Inc.’s YouTube on Jan. 27. “Frankly, we’re just going to have to trim some of these programs.”
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said Jan. 26 that U.S. budget deficit will widen this year to a record $1.5 trillion, partly because of the $858 billion tax-cut measure passed last month by Congress.
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