WASHINGTON, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama Saturday said "it is critical that we rein in" budget deficits that put economic recovery at risk.
In his weekly radio and Internet address, Obama praised the Senate for restoring a so-called pay-as-you-go law requiring that any new spending be paid for with tax increases or equivalent spending cuts elsewhere in the budget. He reminded listeners he has proposed a freeze in discretionary spending and a bipartisan commission to explore ways to cut the federal deficit by reducing spending or increasing revenues.
Citing recent economic reports, Obama said the economy has been growing for six months and noted Friday's government report that the rate of growth in the fourth quarter of 2009 was greater than at any other time in the past six years. However, he noted the unemployment rate remains at more than 10 percent and said -- as he did in the State of Union speech Wednesday -- "job creation will be our No. 1 focus in 2010."
"But as we work to create jobs, it is critical that we rein in the budget deficits we've been accumulating for far too long -- deficits that won't just burden our children and grandchildren, but could damage our markets, drive up our interest rates and jeopardize our recovery right now," Obama said.