President Obama came out this morning defending his budget. The entire presser was 60 minutes long, but I didn't want to be accused of taking anything out of context, so I present the MSNBC version in full.
To be honest, there's been so much conflicting information out there, I'm not really prepared to opine on it. I know there's been a lot of grumbling on the left, and certainly, putting balancing the budget on the backs of the those who can least afford it seems foolish at best, heartless at worst. I would love to see an analysis of how much money we would save by simply retracting those ridiculously over-priced privatized defense contracts with companies like KBR, Halliburton and Xe/Blackwater. But it's also important to remember that what we see now will hardly be the final version. And even if we disagree--however vehemently--with the details, the overall thrust of the budget is hard to argue with: bringing back American jobs.
President Obama's proposed fiscal 2012 budget is potentially a massive job-creation engine, with plans to generate millions of them by repairing and expanding highways, bridges and railways. But the spending plan also heralds an outsize political battle as it reignites the type of Republican skepticism over the effectiveness of such outlays that characterized the 2009 economic stimulus. More critically, it's fuzzy on how the $556 billion in projects over six years will be funded. Experts say that makes it unlikely to pass a deficit-obsessed Congress
I'd say that the characterization of Congress being 'deficit-obsessed' is both understated and oversimplified. The Republicans in Congress simply do not want the Obama administration to have any kind of success and will take down the country to make it happen. Don't believe me? Look at Speaker of the House John Boehner, who went from "Where are the jobs" to this:
This morning, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) casually dismissed concerns that the proposed GOP spending cuts would cause many federal employees to lose their jobs. Talking Points Memo reports:
At a press conference in the lobby of RNC headquarters Tuesday morning, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) shrugged this off as collateral damage.
"In the last two years, under President Obama, the federal government has added 200,000 new federal jobs," Boehner said. "If some of those jobs are lost so be it. We're broke."