The 10-year budget request President Obama unveiled calls for nearly $300 billion in new spending on jobs and public works.

Budget

In the first budget of his second term, President Obama set aside the grand ambitions that marked his early days in office and sent Congress a blueprint aimed at achieving a simple goal: ending the long partisan standoff over the national debt.

The 10-year budget request Obama unveiled calls for nearly $300 billion in new spending on jobs and public works. That includes a landmark $77 billion expansion of preschool education financed by smokers, who would have to pay an extra 94 cents a pack for cigarettes.

But barely five months after winning a decisive reelection victory, Obama proposes nothing on the scale of the $1.2 trillion initiative to extend health coverage to the uninsured that he pursued after taking office in 2009.

Instead, with sharp automatic spending cuts threatening to slow the economic recovery and another showdown over the federal debt limit looming this year, the blueprint establishes a budget deal with Republicans as Obama’s top fiscal priority. For the first time, he is formally proposing to trim scheduled Social Security benefits — a GOP demand that is anathema to many Democrats. He is also offering to make meaningful reductions in Medicare benefits, including higher premiums for couples making more than $170,000 a year.

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Source: Lori Montgomery | The Washington Post | April 10, 2013
Image: The Washington Post