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April 10, 2013

Obama 2014 Budget Proposes Tax Changes for Wealthy

by VOA News

President Barack Obama is proposing a $3.77 trillion U.S. government budget for 2014 that would change taxes for the wealthy and adjust how Social Security benefits are calculated, a plan that fails to satisfy members of both parties.

The proposal intends to reduce the deficit by nearly $2 trillion during the next decade, through a combination of new revenues and budget cuts.  It includes a minimum 30 percent tax on people making $1 million or more a year.  

Obama is pushing for a compromise between Republicans who refuse to raise taxes and Democrats who are seeking to protect popular programs that provide pensions and health care to the elderly and poor.

​​The president says his proposed budget is not his ideal plan to cut the deficit, but an effort at compromise to end what he says has been a cycle of short-term, crisis-driven decision-making.

Competing budget plans have already been passed by the Republican-controlled House of Representatives and the Democratic-controlled Senate, setting the stage for contentious negotiations.

Republicans are opposed to raising more government revenue, after a deal with Democrats earlier this year that increased income-tax rates on wealthy Americans.  And lawmakers in the president's Democratic Party are angry over his suggestion to switch to a modified formula to measure inflation, which will lower annual cost-of-living increases for Social Security recipients.

Obama will host a group of 12 Republican lawmakers at a private dinner at the White House Wednesday night to discuss his budget proposals.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.