Senators Unable to Agree to Move to Debate on Budget Proposals
The Senate has rejected five budget resolutions this week - including the President's budget. The proposals were not able to muster the simple majority required to advance. In fact - the President's budget didn't receive a single vote. According to the Washington Post - President Obama has warned Congressional leaders that he won't tolerate a replay of last summer's debt-ceiling fight that nearly put the country in default and led to the nation's first credit-rating downgrade. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney says President Obama told top House and Senate leaders that he expects a serious bipartisan approach to tackling the budget and the federal deficit this year.
Nebraska Senator Mike Johanns says the President's budget would add 6.4-trillion dollars to the national debt over the next 10 years and increase the nation's publicly held debt to more than 76-percent of the entire economy by 2022.
Though still not enough to proceed to debate - two proposals garnered more than 40 votes in the Senate. The budget introduced by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan - which passed the House of Representatives - spends 5.3-trillion dollars less than President Obama's budget over 10 years. The other proposal was introduced by Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey and would have balanced the budget within eight years by bringing spending to 18.3-percent of the nation's economy.
On the House side - Speaker John Boehner has threatened to block an increase in the federal debt ceiling if there aren't significant cuts in spending. Boehner reportedly told the President he would not allow an increase if something serious isn't done about the debt.
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