News / USA

Obama: Debt Deal Needed to Guarantee Pension Checks

President Barack Obama sits with House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, as he meets with Republican and Democratic leaders regarding the debt ceiling, in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, DC,  July 11, 2011
President Barack Obama sits with House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, as he meets with Republican and Democratic leaders regarding the debt ceiling, in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, DC, July 11, 2011
TEXT SIZE - +

U.S. President Barack Obama says he cannot guarantee that there will be money to pay millions of pension checks scheduled to go out on August 3, unless a deal can be made with opposition Republicans on difficult debt issues.

He spoke in a television interview by CBS, which put some of his remarks on its website Tuesday.  

Obama and Republicans in Congress have sharply different ideas on how to raise the $14.3 trillion legal limit on the amount of money Washington can borrow, and they have to reach an agreement by August 2.  Otherwise, they face the possibility that the United States would have to default on some payments.

Obama held another in a long series of negotiations with congressional leaders Tuesday, but the two sides appeared to be growing further apart before the talks began.  The top Senate Republican, Mitch McConnell, said it may not be possible to get a long term solution to the budget problem as long as Obama is in office.  McConnell called Obama's proposals "smoke and mirrors".

But shortly before the meeting at the White House, McConnell proposed a solution using parliamentary maneuvers that would allow the president to raise the debt ceiling without Republican support.

The president proposes a $4 trillion package of spending cuts and revenue increases over 10 years, but the Republicans say they will not allow tax increases and want to focus only on cutting government spending.

Democrats strongly oppose cuts in popular social programs for the poor and elderly.  They say raising taxes on the wealthy and big corporations is essential because the government needs more revenue to close the budget gap.

Republicans say it makes no sense to raise taxes on wealthy people who can invest in the economy and create jobs.  The speaker of the House of Representatives, Republican John Boehner, has said no deal can pass the House unless it rules out tax increases and cuts spending.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said Tuesday the two sides understand what it will take to reach a deal and come to an agreement.  He has warned previously that failing to raise the $14.3 trillion legal limit on what the government can borrow to pay its debts would be "catastrophic."

Some information for this report was provided by AP.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid