Millennium Post

Obama ends austerity focus in $4-tn budget

Senior officials said the plan would "put the good of middle-class families and our economy front and center, while also continuing progress on restoring fiscal discipline." "You don't have to choose between those two things," one official said. "You can in fact accomplish both."

The plan would see the deficit remain under three percent of gross domestic product -- a level economists commonly view as sustainable. "The deficit in 2016 will be $474 billion or 2.5 percent of GDP," a senior administration official said, adding that debt would be 75 per cent of GDP. Full details of the budget will be released later on Monday. Obama will give a speech at the Department of Homeland Security -- an agency currently the subject of a budget fight with Republicans and a sign that the president plans to take a combative approach.

Republicans are likely to balk in particular at the increase in non-military spending and the closing of popular tax loopholes. Around $478 billion would be spent on America's creaking infrastructure, a one third increase. It would be paid for in part by a one-time 14 per cent tax on the estimated $2 trillion of untaxed earnings held by US firms overseas.
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