Obama budget calls for record US deficit

Friday, February 27, 2009

United States President Barack Obama unveiled his administration's 2010 United States federal budget on Thursday. The budget calls for a record US$3.6 trillion in spending.

President Obama announces the 2010 US federal budget.

The new budget will use a $1.75 trillion deficit, which would be nearly four times greater than any previous deficit and is $250 billion larger than what was projected just days ago due to a proposed new spending for another bank bailout.

"We will, each and every one of us, have to compromise on certain things we care about but which we simply cannot afford right now," said President Obama. "What I won't do is sacrifice investments that will make America stronger, more competitive and more prosperous in the 21st century — investments that have been neglected for too long."

House of Representatives minority leader John Boehner was critical of the budget. "We can't tax and spend our way to prosperity," he said. "The era of big government is back, and Democrats are asking you to pay for it."

"Given the economic catastrophe that we face, to go right into the teeth of that hurricane and plan for some ambitious expansion of government that goes beyond the triage element is bold to say the least," Norman J. Ornstein, a political scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, told Reuters.

$634 billion of the budget is "dedicated [to] financing reforms to our health care system," according to Obama. Analysts reporting for the BBC and Reuters both conclude that, if passed, it lays a ground-work for a form of universal health care.