Fox News' Bill Kristol and Bill O'Reilly suggested that President Obama has not laid out a plan for reducing the nation's deficit. In fact, Obama put forward a plan in September that would reduce the deficit by approximately $3 trillion over the next decade.
Kristol, O'Reilly Suggest That President Obama Has No Deficit-Reduction Plan
Kristol: "Where Is President Obama? ... Where's His Proposal?" From the November 21 edition of Fox News' Special Report:
BRET BAIER (host): Do you buy that the Democrats were that united in their own proposal, going forward in the supercommittee, that it was actually a real deal?
BILL KRISTOL: Well, where was the Democratic proposal? The House Republicans passed a budget, the Paul Ryan budget, which would cut much more than 1.2 trillion. Senator Toomey put out a proposal, which we've seen a fair number about of the details of, which would have gotten to 1.2 trillion.
Maybe I'm unaware of it, but is there a Democratic proposal that we've seen? Where is President Obama? He's up there, "Oh, this is a disgrace. It's terrible, It's irresponsible." Where's his proposal? Where's his proposal? I didn't notice him coming back from Asia, or not even -- or even before he went to Asia and saying, "OK, here's how to do 1.2 trillion." It's a total abdication of leadership on his part. [Fox News, Special Report, 11/21/11]
O'Reilly: "Where Is President Obama On Leadership? He Should Have Laid Out His Vision." From the November 21 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor:
O'REILLY: We, the people, well understand the chaos in Washington. The Democrats, generally speaking, want to spend. They often get elected by promising entitlement to minorities, to unions, to special interest groups. The Republicans want a much smaller government. They want to strangle what's in place now by denying it revenue. The GOP also wants President Obama out of there, so they are not likely to compromise much.
In the meantime, little gets done. The debt grows larger, the economy weaker. And where is President Obama on leadership? He should have laid out his vision for spending cuts, but he didn't. In fact, he's MIA. Running around with the Indonesians, having fun in Bali. Meantime, Washington is collapsing. Mr. Obama should be showing leadership, demanding trillions in spending cuts. [Fox News, The O'Reilly Factor, 11/21/11]
In Fact, Obama Released Deficit-Reduction Plan In September
In September, Obama Released Plan "For Economic Growth And Deficit Reduction." Obama's plan assumes $1.2 trillion in savings from the Budget Control Act passed in August, and reduces the deficit by more than $3 trillion over the next decade:
The Budget Control Act that I signed into law last month will cut annual Government spending by about $1 trillion over the next 10 years. It also charges the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction with finding an additional $1.5 trillion in savings. As part of this jobs bill, I am asking the Congress to increase that amount so that it covers the full cost of the American Jobs Act. In addition, I believe that the Congress should seize the opportunity that this new Committee presents and do much more so that we can put the country on a sustainable fiscal path, which is critical for our long-term economic growth and competitiveness.
For this reason, I am sending to the Congress this detailed plan to pay for this jobs bill and realize more than $3 trillion in net deficit reduction over the next 10 years. Combined with the approximately $1 trillion in savings from the first part of the Budget Control Act, this would generate more than $4 trillion in deficit reduction over the next decade. This would bring the Nation to the point where current spending is no longer adding to our debt and where our debt is no longer increasing as a share of our economy--an important milestone on the way to restoring fiscal discipline and moving us toward balance. [Living Within Our Means and Investing in the Future: The President's Plan for Economic Growth and Deficit Reduction, WhiteHouse.gov, September 2011]
CBPP: Obama's Proposal Combines Revenue Increases And Spending Cuts. From a statement on the proposal by James R. Horney, vice president of federal fiscal policy for the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities:
The President proposes that the sacrifices necessary to reduce the deficit be widely shared. Higher-income Americans -- who have seen their share of the economic pie increase in recent decades -- would give up a portion of the big tax cuts they have enjoyed since 2001. Corporations would give up tax breaks -- such as special benefits for certain industries, including oil and gas companies, and for the purchase of corporate jets -- that do nothing to promote economic growth.
Federal employees would have to pay a larger share of the contributions to their retirement plan, agribusinesses would see reduced subsidies, air travelers would pay more of the costs of security at airports and the air traffic control system, and Medicare and Medicaid would be reduced by $320 billion over ten years. Reductions in discretionary appropriations over the next ten years already agreed to in the Budget Control Act would affect nearly all Americans, as funding for a wide array of programs and activities -- such as grants to state and local governments to help pay for improvements in primary and secondary education, food safety inspections, visitor assistance at national parks, cancer research, and the military -- is constrained.
The only people largely shielded from cuts under the President's plan are the most vulnerable Americans -- children, the disabled, the blind, and the elderly with very low incomes. In light of the recent Census data showing a historically high rate of poverty, the President wisely followed the core principle established by the Bowles-Simpson commission report that deficit reduction should not push more Americans into, or deeper into, poverty. Such a balanced approach -- both increases in revenues and reductions in spending -- is the only approach that will put the budget on an economically and politically sustainable path. [CBPP Statement on President Obama's Budget Package, 9/19/11]
Obama's Budget Plan Includes Offsets Intended To Help Pay For The American Jobs Act. From President Obama's budget plan:
Moreover, the American Jobs Act will not add a dime to the deficit. It includes specific offsets that will, in combination, more than fully pay for its cost. These offsets are part of the larger deficit reduction plan detailed in this volume, but have been specifically made part of the American Jobs Act to ensure that it is paid for. This is accomplished by a provision in the American Jobs Act that increases the $1.5 trillion Joint Committee deficit reduction target by $450 billion to cover the full cost of the jobs creation provisions. [Living Within Our Means and Investing in the Future: The President's Plan for Economic Growth and Deficit Reduction, WhiteHouse.gov, September 2011]