Obama: Budget compromise is good for the future

President Obama used his Saturday morning address to hammer home his message about the last-minute budget deal struck late Friday night.

“Leaders of both parties came together to avert a government shutdown, cut spending and invest in our future,” Obama said in a taped message. 

The agreement, which came after days of partisan sparring and rhetorical drama, would fund the government through the end of September and cut $78.5 billion compared to Obama’s proposed but never enacted fiscal 2011 budget.

{mosads}Because it will take several days to translate the agreement into a legislative draft, both chambers passed a stopgap measure to keep the government funded until April 15. The short-term measure would also cut $2 billion from the budget, the first of the $78.5 billion in total cuts.

“This is an agreement to invest in our country’s future while making the largest annual spending cut in our history,” Obama said, echoing remarks he made in announcing the agreement. “Like any compromise, this required everyone to give ground on issues that were important to them. I certainly did. Some of the cuts we agreed to will be painful – programs people rely on will be cut back; needed infrastructure projects will be delayed.”

Democrats knocked off most of the controversial policy riders that House Republicans had included in H.R. 1, the package of spending cuts that passed in February, including one that would have cut funding for Planned Parenthood, which provides abortion services. 

“We also prevented this important debate from being overtaken by politics and unrelated disagreements on social issues,” the president said in his morning address.

Republicans, however, won the inclusion of a rider to expand the District of Columbia’s school voucher program and to authorize a Government Accountability Office study of a financial oversight board established by the Wall Street reform bill.


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