News / USA

US Lawmakers Speak Out Ahead of Key Obama Address

House Republican Leader Eric Cantor (L) pictured here with House Speaker John Boehner on Capitol Hill in Washington in a December 18, 2012, file photo.House Republican Leader Eric Cantor (L) pictured here with House Speaker John Boehner on Capitol Hill in Washington in a December 18, 2012, file photo.
x
House Republican Leader Eric Cantor (L) pictured here with House Speaker John Boehner on Capitol Hill in Washington in a December 18, 2012, file photo.
House Republican Leader Eric Cantor (L) pictured here with House Speaker John Boehner on Capitol Hill in Washington in a December 18, 2012, file photo.
Michael Bowman
U.S. lawmakers of both major political parties agree President Barack Obama should focus on America’s economic challenges and fiscal woes in his State of the Union address Tuesday. But they differ sharply on the proposals they want Obama to put forward.

Republican legislators say President Obama must confront out-of-control federal spending. Specifically, they want the president to propose targeted budget reductions to replace automatic, across-the-board spending cuts that will go into effect next month if Congress does not act.
 
House Republican Leader Eric Cantor spoke on NBC’s Meet the Press program.
 
“These are indiscriminate cuts. We can do a lot better. And what I hope to be able to hear from the president in the State of the Union [address], is [that] he wants to join us in trying to effect much smarter cuts in spending.”
 
The automatic cuts, known as sequestration, would be divided evenly between national security and domestic programs. President Obama has called for a mix of spending reductions and revenue enhancements to match the sequestration’s deficit reduction target.
 
Democrats call this a “balanced approach” to improving America’s fiscal health - one that would preserve federal investments in education and other priority areas.
 
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi appeared on Fox News Sunday.
 
“Nothing brings more money to the Treasury of the United States than investment in education of the American people. So we have to recognize that - which cuts really help us and which cuts hurt our future.”
 
Democrats want tax deductions enjoyed by wealthy Americans curbed or eliminated to bring in additional revenue. But many Republicans oppose raising taxes. Republican Senator John McCain also spoke on Fox News Sunday.
 
“I do not want to see taxes increased. What I would like to see is the president call [congressional] leaders over to the White House and say, ‘Look, we have to solve this problem.”
 
While hardened partisan battle lines have been drawn on fiscal matters, there are other issues in which the possibility of compromise between Democrats and Republicans seems less remote: including reforming America’s immigration system and strengthening the regulation of gun sales.

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Religion Aside, Christmas Gains Popularity in Communist Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid