TEXT OF INTERVIEW
Bill Radke: This morning, President Obama sent Congress his proposed budget for next year. It would raise the federal deficit to a new record — more than $1.5 trillion. The president talked about his plans to tackle that deficit. Marketplace’s Amy Scott was listening. She joins us live. Good morning, Amy.
Amy Scott: Good morning.
Radke: So what did President Obama have to say about this new record projected deficit?
Scott: Well in the long term, he plans to start reducing it by eliminating some of the Bush-era tax cuts, freezing a lot of domestic spending for three years, imposing fees on big banks. But he warned that it will take time to bring down the deficit. You know, unemployment is still at 10 percent, and the president proposed a $100 billion jobs package as part of this budget. But for next year, he’s also proposed cuts in 120 programs that he says would save about $20 billion.
Radke: And what are some of those cuts?
Scott: Well he proposed cutting some environmental clean-up programs, and the program that lets low-income people collected their earned income tax credit in advance, which has been rife with abuse. He said that like families are doing all over the country, we need to save where we can so we can afford what we need.
President Barack Obama: I’m willing to reduce waste in programs I care about. And I’m asking members of Congress to do the same. I’m asking Republicans and Democrats alike to take a fresh look at programs they’ve supported in the past to see what’s working and what’s not and trim back accordingly.
Radke: Ah, I’m glad he brought up Congress Amy, because that’s where this budget is heading next. What kind of fight does the president face?
Scott: Well some members of Congress, of course, have their pet projects. And special interest groups are already protesting spending freezes. Meanwhile, some Republicans, though, say a three-year spending freeze isn’t enough. So the budget could look a lot different when this process is finally over.
Radke: Marketplace’s Amy Scott. Thank you.
Scott: Thank you.
There’s a lot happening in the world. Through it all, Marketplace is here for you.
You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible.
Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.