March 17th, 2009
10:49 AM ET
5 years ago

Obama seeks nonpartisan input on 2010 budget

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama urged both Democratic and Republican members of Congress Tuesday to provide him with "constructive alternative solutions" if they disagree with any sections of his 2010 budget proposal.

Late last month, Obama unveiled a $3.55 trillion budget that he said would halve the federal deficit by the end of his first term.

Obama made his comments at a news conference in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building after meeting with Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad, D-North Dakota, and House Budget Committee Chairman John Spratt Jr., D-South Carolina.

Obama made his comments at a news conference in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building after meeting with Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad, D-North Dakota, and House Budget Committee Chairman John Spratt Jr., D-South Carolina.

"There's been a lot of discussion about this budget already, and I hope we engage in a healthy debate going forward," Obama said. "The challenges we face are not partisan. We're going to get some numbers with respect to the budget that may make this even tougher in the next couple of weeks."

Given the magnitude of the nation's problems, "we don't need more point scoring, we need more problem solving. So if there are members in Congress who object to specific policies and proposals in this budget, then I ask them to be ready and willing to propose constructive alternative solutions," Obama added.

"This budget doesn't attempt to solve every problem or address every issue," he said.

The 2010 fiscal year begins October 1. Although the banking crisis has been a major focus of the administration, Obama said there are other issues just as pressing, such as the high cost of health care and the need for non-oil energy sources.

Obama made no mention of the controversial $165 million in bonuses that American International Group Inc. (AIG) paid top executives and some other employees, following a $173 billion taxpayer bailout. The move has infuriated the White House and Congress, which are trying to find way to recoup the bonus
funds.


Filed under: President Obama • Uncategorized
soundoff (129 Responses)
  1. Rick

    lolol..."nonpartisan input"...that's laughable coming from the most partisan administration to ever occupy the white house.

    March 17, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  2. Mel

    Wow, do you guys even read what you're typing before you hit submit? We are tired of the hatred you people keep spewing, isn't it obvious yet? You have this scewed view of things that have no baring in reality.

    March 17, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  3. Scott the Independent

    I hope President Obama put the request in writting and stated that he would like ideas that have not already been "proven failures". I'd like to see all the ideas made public so we the people can see just how intelligent our representative and senators are. Just in time for the elections.

    March 17, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  4. Beverly, NYC

    Nice of you to do this Mr. president, but we already know what the Republican response will be, it's NO, some rich people tax cuts, and let main street like their base figure it out themselves!!! Other than Boehner, Cantor, & Mitchell being all over the airwaves complaining I wouldn't expect any constructive participation from theUSS Republican ship of fools. If they work to get the country back on it's feet what would they have to complain about? You may have better luck going directly to Rush.

    March 17, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  5. Pat

    Is his budget going to be like his actions against small business? He is make borrowing easier while taking a good bit more out of their wallets. Anyone see ruins?
    Is his budget going to be like his pretty speeches to the veterans? He says one thing and then stabs in the back. The only thing he has been consistent on increasing the government power and spending without measurable output.

    March 17, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  6. Fred

    Ian March 17th, 2009 11:16 am ET

    Well we could stop spending $1 trillion EVERY YEAR on our overseas empire. Why do we have military bases in over 130 countries? How would we like it if China put a military base in our country? Let's bring our troops home and have a real trading relationship with other countries, and stop meddling in their political affairs.
    **********************************************************
    That's a good start, though incidentally all our overseas military bases are there through the allowance of the host country. If the host country wants us to leave, all they have to do is ask, just as Khazakstan recently did.

    However, as you point out, we do spend a large amount of money on military operations abroad. Usually to the tune of $100 billion per year during peace time, though certainly higher now with two battlefronts in the Middle East.

    March 17, 2009 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  7. Ian

    @ Sniffit

    The point has nothing to do with Jesus, but gives you the perspective of just how much $1 trillion is.

    Obama's budget is $3.55 trillion, the TARP was about another $1 trillion, the stimulus was about another $1 trillion, the federal reserve has printed at least $3 trillion, and we spend about $1 trillion per year on our overseas empire (military bases, etc.). Social Security, a $30 trillion unfunded liability (read Ponzi scheme) is about to blow up.

    The GDP, which is a manipulated number, is what, about $12 trillion?

    The point is that printing all this money that we don't have, or borrowing it from China is going to blow up in our face. This isn't a Democrat or Republican thing.

    March 17, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  8. Sound_Mind

    The President is too gentleman for the kind of people like Limbaugh, Cheney, Cantor or Boehner. These people over 8 short years drove this country to the ground. Lied to people to start an unncecessary war in Iraq that got 4000 soldiers killed and 1 trillion spent. They let wallstreets go unregulated and robbed people's 401K and retirement savings, watched home price falling with millions of foreclosure doing nothing knowing full well that sooner or later these bad mortgages will eventually hit bank's balance sheet causing all sorts of trouble. This President campaigned on "CHANGE" to set the country on a different course, he campaigned on healthcare, education, energy that American people care about and agreed with him and voted for him. Now it's his Obligation to deliver on his promise. We did not elect him to sing or dance with Limbaugh or congressional republicans. If the come around and give him a hand, fine. If not, who cares. Obama is working on behalf of people and doing what people sent him to do. He does not need to be Mr. Nice when all he gets from his opponent is endless noncooperation and cheap political point scoring. We have seen that enough for last 8 years. It's a new day. Repubs, cry all you can but people of this country wants us to try something different and that's what this President is doing. Put Up or just Shut Up!

    March 17, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  9. Kevin in Ohio

    Well said, Fred..... how on earth can liberals sit there and try to remind us conservatives that this man is OUR PRESIDENT, when they never even once acknowledged George Bush as THEIR PRESIDENT. The shoe is on the other foot now. Obama has yet to prove to me that he is even close to being capable as our nation's chief executive. I hope he can explain how he will listen to us when he goes on Leno this week.

    March 17, 2009 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  10. Ian

    @ Sniffit

    The point has nothing to do with Jesus, but gives you the perspective of just how much $1 trillion is.

    Obama's budget is $3.55 trillion, the TARP was about another $1 trillion, the stimulus was about another $1 trillion, the federal reserve has printed at least $3 trillion, and we spend about $1 trillion per year on our overseas empire (military bases, etc.). Social Security, a $30 trillion unfunded liability (read Ponzi scheme) is about to blow up.

    The GDP, which is a manipulated number, is what, about $12 trillion?

    The point is that printing all this money that we don't have, or borrowing it from China is going to blow up in our face. This isn't a Democrat or Republican thing.

    March 17, 2009 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  11. Sniffit

    @ Dennis, who said "The Democrats idea of bipartainship is for the Republics to totally agree with the Presiden't's agenda without any input."

    Ummm, no. They've simply asked that the GOP come to the table with something other than their disproven ideology of tax cuts for the rich, trickle-down nonsense. The FACTS do NOT support that approach. The wealth gap has widened considerably over teh past 30 years while we applied that BS. The GOP, on the other hand, insists that tax cuts are the only way to stimulate the economy and accomplish anything...the univeral panacea...and, e.g., despite the stimulus package being almost half tax cuts, they did their obstructionist dance because there was even $1 of spending in it. Nobody is going to believe the playground politics "I know you are but what am I?" It is quite clear that the GOP's message right now is "our way or no way"...not the Dems'.

    March 17, 2009 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  12. worriedmom

    Obama needs to clean up his administration first before trying to convince us of his budget. Dodd, made sure AIG was protected on bonuses, Geithner knew these bonuses with AIG were going to happen. So this was not a Repbulican thing on this issue of bonuses! Only when the media got ahold of it did Obama and friends act like they were outraged. Maybe if some of Obama's men had been saying NO to AIG and others we would not be in this particular mess. Yes, it did start with Bush but Obama knew that going in and told everyone he would handle it and you voted for him thinking he would change the world in 100 days or less . So stop the Bush bashing and realize that the ball is in Obama's court now.

    March 17, 2009 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  13. Anita

    The question is will President Obama actually listen to opposing views or will this be a repeat of the bail out bill, where only Pelosi's opinion matters?

    As a Democrat I would like to see the budget put together with a 50/50 perspective.

    March 17, 2009 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  14. Jim in DC

    Its so the dems can add the cap and trade from CO2 emmisions

    March 17, 2009 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  15. sorry,I dont get paid to post

    Tell it to the Hatfields and the McCoys.A potato famine wasnt the only thing they had a shortage of,brains were also on their shortage list,just look at the republican party today and look at their gene pool.

    March 17, 2009 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  16. Ohio Man

    @ Pat F

    Did your T.V go out again hun? .. because i have seen so many attemps from The Prez. to work with the Rebubs and all they say is No and have no ideas as to how to fix the problems.. The Prez has been trying from day 1 to find some kind of way to help America.. note: i said AMERICA .. not doing what good for the BIG CEO that will prosper from war or cantracts overseas.. but he is trying to put money in American peoples pockets and rebuild America were you and i live and hope that our Roads and school system and structure will be worth something in the future when out children and grandchild use them i would rather go in debt knowing that the problems of america are going to worked on and soon fixed then go in debt over a war that only help pad the pockets of the 1% that own this country..because i know i'm not part of that 1% are you ? ..but Rebubs have a problem with this .. so please tell me why?

    March 17, 2009 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  17. In Houston, TX

    Okay, yeah, NO.
    I really do admire his attempt to reach out to the repuglicans, but, no. The GOP is not here to help. They are not here to help the president, they have no positive input to contribute to the process, and most importantly, they are not here to help the people.
    The past 8 years of GOP rule is still fresh in the memories of the voting population.
    The repuglicans becoming the Grand Obstruction Party with no viable alternative suggestions, is still fresh in the minds of people. They are now known as The Party of 'NO'
    We can no longer afford an attempt at bipartisanship. The GOP doesn't want that.
    I say, just let them go. They are killing themselves anyway

    March 17, 2009 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  18. Indiana Voter

    Kevin B March 17th, 2009 11:15 am ET

    Most republicans have a viseral and irrational hate for this president. Thus there is no amount of bipartisanship or reason that can come from them.
    -------------

    I really can't believe that you are saying this after the way Democrats treated Bush the last 8 years. Are you ignoring the fact that you as Democratshad a viseral and irrational hate for Bush? Oh I forgot, Democrats don't like history. It always proves them wrong, unless they change it.

    I will support Obama as much as the Democrats supported Bush's policies. Oh wait... they never supported Bush.

    March 17, 2009 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  19. Maggie from Virginia

    Cantor mentioned on Meet the Press that his party is working on an alternative. We won't hold our breath on that. Republicans are too slow.

    GOP, try being proactive instead of reactive to everything. With the amount of time some of you have been in congress, you should know the congressional process by now.

    March 17, 2009 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  20. Sniffit

    @ Kevin in Ohio

    One by one:

    1. Good suggestion...Geithner isn't necessarily in over his head, but there seems to be some lag there.

    2. That's just regurgitated rhetoric. The vast majority of Americans are getting tax cuts.

    3. Vetoes can be overturned by Congress. While it's nice to play ideological knight in shining armor, I'd rather Obama use the veto when it is practical and will accomplish something. Using it on the $410B budget bill would have accomplished nothing.

    4. Solving the health care problem is a fundamental and vital part of solving the economic problems we are facing. It is inextricably linked to your request that he find a way to put more dollars in the pockets of the average American.

    March 17, 2009 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  21. Sniffit

    @ Kevin in Ohio

    1. Good suggestion...Geithner isn't necessarily in over his head, but there seems to be some lag there.
    2. That's just regurgitated rhetoric. The vast majority of Americans are getting tax cuts.
    3. Vetoes can be overturned by Congress. While it's nice to play ideological knight in shining armor, I'd rather Obama use the veto when it is practical and will accomplish something, not just ot make a political point.
    4. Solving the health care problem is a fundamental and vital part of solving the economic problems we are facing. It is inextricably linked to your request that he find a way to put more dollars in the pockets of the average American.

    March 17, 2009 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  22. Fred the Moderate

    Mr. President, if they don't want to input into the budget- just obstruct it, ignore them and do what's best for the country. The GOP is done. All they have are talking heads that spew hate. Their representation has stated it wanted to make the speaker of the house look bad before the next election. If that's the only agenda they have they can care less about the American people. They are loosing again and it isn't even time for the election. Name calling and attacks are all they have! They have no platform, theme, leader or personality. They bombed themselves with bush / chenney, (by the way chenney keep talking, you are helping the Demcrates by reminding the US about all the failures of the bush / chenney republican party) and seem bent on continuing to bomb themselves. We need to move on. If they don't want to grow up, leave them!

    March 17, 2009 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  23. Libertarian

    Remember, the Democrats won. A HUGE majority of Americans voted for him. The minority party may now give input but the direction is up to the Democrats. Input from the MINORITY is needed but screaming that Democrats won't follow their agenda lock step is silly. Did I mention the Democrats won? They get to set the tone and direction.

    March 17, 2009 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  24. Vast Right Wing Conspiracy Member

    March 17th, 2009 11:21 am ET

    I don't think they're going to get anything bipartisan from the Republican party. The party has this insane irrational hatred and anger towards Obama thats making them impossible to work with. They aren't interested in doing whats good for all, only in whats good for their own pockets.

    I'll give Obama all the love that the democrats gave president Bush.......NONE WHATSOEVER. He can get plenty of it from Chris Mathews tingly feelings.

    March 17, 2009 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  25. Chris - Denver

    Nonpartisan input....lotsa luck!!

    March 17, 2009 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
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