Today, President Obama unveiled his 2012 budget proposal. Following the budget’s release, Chairman Tim Kaine issued the following statement:
In his State of the Union address, President Obama called on Congress to join him in two major efforts designed to help America win the future: making the tough choices and budget cuts required to reduce America’s deficit and restore fiscal stability while also making bold investments in education, innovation, infrastructure and other areas critical to economic growth. President Obama’s 2012 budget proposal is a blueprint for success in both those efforts.
The President’s budget does not shy away from the reality of America’s difficult fiscal situation. In fact, he offers more than $1 trillion in deficit reduction that puts America back on the path toward fiscal sustainability. Two-thirds of that deficit reduction is achieved through spending cuts – but the President has made it clear that he will not skimp on programs, incentives, or initiatives that will help to make America more competitive in the global economy. In fact, the President’s budget directs more money toward research and development in a variety of fields, supports the goal of making America more energy independent, expands tax incentives to spur investment and hiring, expands the successful Race to the Top program to increase educational excellence, establishes a National Infrastructure Bank to support critical infrastructure projects, and funds a National Wireless Initiative that will make American businesses more competitive by expanding high-speed internet access to nearly all Americans.
It bears repeating that President Obama has offered a budget that makes those critical investments and still manages to reduce America’s deficit and stabilize America’s fiscal footing. That stands in stark contrast to Republican proposals that would cut spending by starving American entrepreneurs, businesses, and students of the resources they need to grow. Following the Republicans’ plan would be like asking a carpenter to sell his tools to pay off his debts – that might stop the creditors from calling, but it would hobble his efforts to work in the future. That’s why it’s so important that we follow the President’s budget model. We have to do more than just reduce the deficit in order to win the future--we have to set America up to out-educate, out-build, and out-innovate our competitors around the globe.