White House to release spending cuts report next week

ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE Fri Sep 7, 2012 6:44pm EDT

U.S. President Barack Obama attends a campaign event at the Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, September 7, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

U.S. President Barack Obama attends a campaign event at the Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, September 7, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Larry Downing

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ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE (Reuters) - The Obama administration plans to deliver a report to Congress late next week that details spending cuts that will be required if congressional leaders fail to reach a deficit reduction deal by year end.

White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters traveling to New Hampshire on Air Force One that the administration would provide details of spending cuts later than planned. Under a law signed on August 7, President Barack Obama had 30 days to inform Congress of how billions of dollars in automatic spending cuts would be carried out.

"Given the time needed to address the complex issues involved in preparing the report, the administration will be submitting that report to Congress late next week," Carney said.

Republican House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner said the delay showed Obama's refusal "to level with the American people." He added that the president, fresh from attending the Democrats' national convention, had "put his own election campaign ahead of the interests of the country."

The automatic cuts, known as sequestration, total about $1.2 trillion through 2021 and were part of a deal between the White House and Congress made last year after talks on the U.S. debt crisis reached an impasse.

The cuts are intended to be so unsavory that Democrats and Republicans would both want to prevent them from occurring. They are to take effect on January 2 unless Congress reaches a deficit-reduction deal.

"No amount of planning changes the fact that sequester would have devastating consequences," Carney said. "We need to deal with our fiscal challenges in a balanced way."

If the cuts are not changed or canceled by Congress, the spending reductions would take away about $55 billion from defense and $55 billion from other domestic programs in 2013.

Democrats insist that Republicans agree to tax increases for higher-income earners in exchange for changing certain defense cuts, while Republicans oppose any tax increases. There are no current deficit-reduction steps that have gained support to avoid the cuts.

(Reporting by Jeff Mason; Additional reporting by Lisa Lambert; Writing by Margaret Chadbourn; Editing by Vicki Allen and Peter Cooney)

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Comments (5)
mbo wrote:
gee, it’s kinda hard when ALL your time is spent campaigning in the last year

Sep 07, 2012 11:25pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
justinolcb wrote:
here’s the cuts: Michelle get’s no more world wide trips with random family members who have no political connection to the US government, yet traveled at our expense; other people need to buy Obama’s beers for him; cigarette sponsors will be lined up for his smoking habit; everybody becomes vegetarians in the White House and must spend their fair share of time picking the food and tending to the garden; Staples will donate all the moving boxes when they need to vacate the premises in January

Sep 08, 2012 12:32pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
TheNewWorld wrote:
It is sad that cutting the deficit spending (spending that we do beyond our income) by 10% from 1.1 trillion to 990 billion is too painful for Republicans and Democrats. $55 billion out of over $700 billion for the military is the end of the world for the Pentagon. How can we keep voting these people back into office over and over?

Sep 08, 2012 2:17pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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