Deficit reduction priority in Obama budget

Feb. 10, 2012 at 5:44 PM
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WASHINGTON, Feb. 10 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama's election year budget will concentrate on deficit reduction and job creation, administration officials said Friday.

Obama unveils the final spending plan of his term Monday and will rely on proposals he first made in September, The New York Times reported.

The budget calls for infrastructure projects to help spur the economy and subsidies to states so they can keep teachers and first responders on the job -- proposals Republicans blocked when they were first proposed last year.

The budget anticipates a continued 2 percentage point reduction in the Social Security payroll tax, which currently is due to expire at the end of the month, and extension of unemployment benefits to those who have been out of work for more than six months.

The plan cuts domestic and military spending to meet caps adopted last August and calls for $360 billion in cuts over 10 years for Medicare and Medicaid.

Obama would end the Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans to raise about $1.5 trillion over the decade -- something Republicans have vowed to block, the Times said.

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