Obama Budget Projects $1.75 Trillion Deficit

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CBNNews.com - Three trillion plus. That's the price tag of President Obama's first budget.

Obama's top priorities include energy deficit reduction and the big one, healthcare.

Click the player to watch the report from CBN News Washington Correspondent Jennifer Wishon.   Also, click here to watch Obama's entire speech on the 2010 budget.

"We can no longer afford to put health care reform on hold. We can't afford to do it. It's time," he said during his speech to Congress Tuesday night.

The President wants to set aside $634 billion over the next ten years to pay for reforms funded by tax hikes starting in 2011 on Americans making $250,000 or more. The Administration also believe it save money by trimming a variety of government programs including Medicare.

The money is being called a "down payment" on healthcare and accounts for more than half the money needed to insure the 48 million Americans without insurance.

The President's budget also includes a plan to raise billions of dollars by placing caps on carbon emissions.

Permits to exceed the caps would be auctioned off and some of that money would be used to make the tax cuts enacted in the stimulus package permanent.

Obama also wants more money for renewable energy programs.

Meanwhile, the federal deficit will balloon to $1.75 trillion this year, but Obama's budget projections show it falling to half that by the end of his term.

Most agree it's an ambitious plan.

"The problem is: how many priorities can the American people focus on at one time? You gotta focus, as he did so effectively, on rebuilding our economy on recovery," Ken Duberstein, Fmr. White House Chief of Staff, said.

During his address to Congress, Obama reminded lawmakers that times are tough and they'll have to sacrifice worthy priorities that simply cannot be funded.

"My budget does not attempt to solve every problem or address every issue," Obama said.

But the big spending plans are already causing controversy on Capitol Hill.

From everything I've seen, it looks like the era of big government spending is back," House Minority Leader John Bohner told reporters. "My question to my Democratic friends is, how are you going to pay for it?"

Republicans are also criticizing plants for both taxes and spending.

"The top one percent of this country already pay. They pay over 50 percent of the taxes now," Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., said.

"Obviously the call for tax increases and a broad range of new liberal spending programs on everything from energy to healthcare to education means there's going to be an awful lot to debate in the coming months here on Capitol Hill," Rep. Mike Pence, R-Ind., said.

For now, Congress and the American people get only an outline of how the President plans to spend that $3 trillion.

Full details of the budget are still more than a month away.

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CBN News
Jennifer Wishon

Jennifer Wishon

CBN News Washington Correspondent

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