News / USA

Republicans Deride Obama Budget Blueprint

From left, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., Rep. Diane Black, R-Tenn., House Budget Committee Chairman, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., Republican Conference Chairman Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, and House Majority Leader Eric Can
From left, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., Rep. Diane Black, R-Tenn., House Budget Committee Chairman, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., Republican Conference Chairman Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, and House Majority Leader Eric Can
Michael Bowman

Congressional Republicans have blasted President Barack Obama’s speech on America’s fiscal future as inadequate, misleading, and divisive. On Capitol Hill, reaction to the presidential address broke along predictable party lines.

About the only praise from Republicans came in a jeering tone: applauding the president for at least entering the budget fray with a broad outline of his fiscal priorities. As for the substance of the president’s speech, Republican House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan clearly was not impressed.

"What we got was a speech that was excessively partisan, dramatically inaccurate, and hopelessly inadequate in addressing our country’s pressing fiscal challenges," he said.

Last week, Ryan unveiled a Republican plan to cut the $1.5 trillion federal deficit by dramatically slashing domestic spending. He was quick to respond to President Obama’s criticism that the plan would devastate U.S. education, innovation and progress, and harm America’s most-vulnerable citizens.

"Exploiting people’s emotions of fear, envy, and anxiety is not hope. It’s not change. It’s partisanship. We don’t need partisanship. We don’t need demagoguery. We need solutions," he said.

In his speech, President Obama called for shared sacrifice to confront America’s national debt, which stands at $14 trillion. While Republicans have ruled out any tax hikes to help bridge the budget gap, Mr. Obama said the wealthy must be called on to contribute to a long-term fiscal solution.

That brought a derisive response from Republican Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah. "I don’t think Americans have been sitting at home thinking, ‘You know what this debate over government spending has been missing? A proposal for a giant tax increase’," he said.

Democrats countered by accusing Republicans of fiscal hypocrisy, saying their anti-government, anti-tax rhetoric undermines any claim of budgetary responsibility. Democratic Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa said, if Republicans were serious about cutting the deficit, they would not insist on extending tax cuts for the wealthy or seek to repeal health care reform.

"Republicans have played the Washington stage for all its worth over the last few weeks, making great solemn speeches to the balconies and to the audiences about the deficit and the debt. The Republicans are proposing to reduce the deficit by increasing the deficit. This is Alice in Wonderland [fairy tale] kind of thinking," he said.

President Obama speech focused on America’s long term fiscal outlook. Thursday, Congress will have a more immediate task: voting on last week’s budget agreement to fund the government through September. The deal, reached as a partial government shutdown loomed, cuts domestic spending more than most Democrats would like, but less than most Republicans had sought.

Even if the spending bill is approved, Capitol Hill is bracing for what promises to be furious debate over whether to raise the limit on how much money the federal government can borrow. Unless the debt ceiling is raised, the United States risks defaulting on its massive national debt, much of which is owed to foreign governments.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus 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.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid