Obama Hopes to Halve Deficit by 2013

WASHINGTON (RushPRnews) 02/23/09-U.S. President Barack Obama will gather a group of lawmakers and economic experts for a meeting Monday to discuss what the White House calls “fiscal responsibility,” with details of his 2010 budget plan to be released later in the week.

Administration officials told media outlets Sunday that the president has a plan to cut the huge government budget deficit in half in the next four years.

Business and labor leaders, academics, and select members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives will gather at Monday’s White House meeting.

Mr. Obama speaks to a joint session of Congress Tuesday about the state of the nation. He is expected to announce details of his budget plans on Thursday.

U.S. media say Mr. Obama plans to cut the deficit by allowing the expiration of Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthy, removing troops from Iraq, and cutting government spending.

The measures are projected to reduce the U.S. budget deficit from $1.3 trillion or nine percent of gross domestic product to $533 billion or three percent of GDP.

IVC Inc.Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union with John King” that he believes the budget will raise taxes on small businesses, and ultimately, hurt the economy.

U.S. state governors are focusing on the federal government’s stimulus plan during their annual meeting in Washington.

Most governors say the funds will help them maintain state services despite the nationwide economic downturn.

At least two Republican governors have said they may refuse a portion of the stimulus funds earmarked for their states. They say some provisions would end up costing their states more in the coming years.

The state leaders go to the White House Monday for a policy briefing.

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