Obama backs deficit-reduction commission

Jan. 24, 2010 at 12:38 AM
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WASHINGTON, Jan. 23 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama endorsed a bill Saturday that would set up a bipartisan budget commission to make deficit-reduction recommendations.

The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., and Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., would require Congress to vote on the commission's recommendations, The New York Times reported.

"These deficits did not happen overnight, and they won't be solved overnight," Obama said in a statement. "We not only need to change how we pay for policies, but we also need to change how Washington works. The only way to solve our long-term fiscal challenge is to solve it together -- Democrats and Republicans."

Many Republicans oppose the commission plan because they say its recommendations would inevitably include tax hikes.

Obama in the past has proposed a presidential commission to cut the deficit, which reached $1.4 trillion last year.

"With tough choices made together, a commitment to pay for what we spend and responsible stewardship of our economy, we will be able to lay the foundation for sustainable job creation and economic growth while restoring fiscal sustainability to our nation," Obama said.

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