Obama’s 2012 Budget: More Taxes, More Spending, Few Cuts
Obama has sent his proposed 2012 budget to Congress… and if anyone thought he was moving to the center, this budget should disabuse them of that notion. It’s filled with typical lefty tax-and-spend:
Obama foresees a deficit of $1.1 trillion for the new budget year, which begins Oct. 1, still very high by historical benchmarks but moving in the right direction.
The president claims $1.1 trillion in deficit savings over the coming decade for his plan, a 12 percent cut from the federal deficits the administration otherwise projects. But that figure includes almost $650 billion in spending cuts and new transportation revenues the administration won’t specify.
Obama would trade cuts to some domestic programs to pay for increases in education, infrastructure and research as necessary investments that he judges to be important to the country’s competitiveness in a global economy.
But he also raises taxes by $1.6 trillion over the coming decade, much of it from allowing recently renewed tax cuts for families making more than $250,000 a year to expire in two years — he signed a two-year extension of them into law just two months ago — and from curbing their tax deductions for charitable contributions, mortgage interest and state and local tax payments.
Despite his spending cuts and tax increases, the government’s total debt would still mushroom from $14.2 trillion now to almost $21 trillion by 2016. Republicans assailed his blueprint for failing to take the lead on the nation’s daunting fiscal problems.
“People vote for presidents because they want leadership,” House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said in an interview. “They expect presidents to take on the greatest challenges facing the country. Well, the biggest crisis we have is the debt, and he’s doing absolutely nothing to get it under control.”
While Obama’s budget total of $3.7 trillion would be down slightly from this year’s estimated $3.8 trillion, lower war costs and declining stimulus spending alone would account for a $90 billion drop.
A year after appointing a bipartisan commission to recommend ways to deal with the debt, Obama would bypass almost all of its painful prescriptions to cut huge benefit programs like Social Security and Medicare. But the president said he understood more must be done.
“The only way to truly tackle our deficit is to cut excessive spending wherever we find it, in domestic spending, defense spending, health care spending and spending through tax breaks and loopholes,” Obama said at a middle school outside Baltimore. “So what we’ve done here is make a down payment.”
If we need “to cut excessive spending wherever we find it,” Mr. President, why are we funding boondoggles like ethanol and high-speed rail? Why are we not cutting the most where the spending is the highest–in entitlements? Your budget doesn’t even cut a penny from entitlements!
As usual from Obama, it’s a lot of fluffy talk trying–and failing–to hide his underlying lefty ideology.