January 25th, 2010
07:55 PM ET
13 years ago

Obama wants to freeze discretionary spending for 3 years

Washington (CNN) - In a move that could help position him in the political center by sharpening his credentials on fiscal discipline, President Obama will announce in Wednesday's State of Union address that he's proposing to save $250 billion by freezing all non-security federal discretionary spending for three years, according to two senior administration officials.

Full coverage: State of the Union address

The senior officials said the budgets of the departments of Defense, Homeland Security, and Veterans Affairs along with some international programs would be exempt from the spending freeze. "We are at war, and we're going to make sure our troops are funded adequately," said one of the senior officials.

The officials would not reveal the details of which specific domestic programs would be cut as they prepare to face major pushback from liberals in the president's own party because popular education and health spending could be on the chopping block. The details will be officially unveiled next Monday, when the president publicly releases his next budget blueprint for fiscal year 2011 (which starts October 1) and beyond.

"We've got to make some tough decisions," said the second senior official. "Everybody is not going to get what they want."

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soundoff (88 Responses)
  1. Texas Jack

    In the meantime keep taxing and no pay raises for the elderly. This man has made further messes far more in the multitudes than the moron Bush made. I say ensure we vote all incumbents out of office.

    January 25, 2010 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  2. Future expat

    I haven't even read the article yet, but I predict unanimous Republican opposition.

    January 25, 2010 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  3. Marty, Grand Rapids MI

    Things he should have done on the first budget. Not sure why the Defense budget gets a pass. The war funding is separate from the Defense budget. Not sure how you can seriously cut costs without cutting the largest pie. We spend more on our military then all other countries in the WORLD combined. You can't tell me we need to do that to maintain our defense. We could cut our military budget in half, still spend 25% of the world's spending on military and pay for 3 health care bills.

    January 25, 2010 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  4. mikl

    I told you before,Obama don't know what to do. He is panic. I want my vote back.

    January 25, 2010 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  5. rodeo clown

    Seems to me there certainly are alot of "Senior Advisors" who keep leaking the Obama Administration's agenda, long before we hear it from the "horses mouth"!! And these "advisors" seem to be crawling out of the woodwork on every last media outlet!!! It is NO wonder we had another "greeting" from the guy who is sitting on a mountaintop yesterday!! I'm surprised someone didn't leak that info before it was even spoken!

    January 25, 2010 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  6. barry

    hillary 2012...

    jobs jobs jobs///
    stimulus keep those employed..where are the roads, highways and bridges being built...not in my state...

    January 25, 2010 11:31 pm at 11:31 pm |
  7. Ok????????? . . .

    ., . . But now I would like to know this: Who pays for Souffle, the guy Obama is bringing in to spin his "new" and suddenly "improved" agenda? Obama or the taxpayers? I would like an answer, please.

    January 25, 2010 11:39 pm at 11:39 pm |
  8. George Guadiane - Austerlitz, NY

    FREEZE??? How about ELIMINATE?
    Eliminate any and all farm subsidies... Eliminate grants and tax exemptions for pharmaceutical and oil companies... And no tax breaks for any company, profitable or not that ships jobs off shore or hires illegal aliens... All profitable ALREADY, they don't need our money.

    We ARE on hard times, and there will have to be sacrifice, but why not take from those that have something to take.

    AND, since our children and thier children and THEIR children are going to have to pay for the mess that the "Grand" Corporatocracy has created, make sure that Education is fully funded.
    Protecting a country full of uneducated, non productive idiots doesn't make any sense to me.

    Single payer health care would be nice too, a healthy work force is more productive, and you KNOW DARN WELL that WalMart isn't going to provide AFFORDABLE health care for their workers... But that can be for another day.

    January 25, 2010 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  9. Tony

    What Obama's proposing is conservatism, by definition. Good for him!

    January 26, 2010 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  10. Nea

    Some will still complain no matter what if he put a freeze on spending or if he spends more i guarantee some will still complain Yes even about this. Watch the Republicans!

    January 26, 2010 12:38 am at 12:38 am |
  11. John in Indy

    how bout we freeze current spending levels for 10 yrs and cut corp tax rates...

    January 26, 2010 01:42 am at 1:42 am |
  12. Donkey Party

    Sounds like you're making your position clear Mr. President. You just keep giving in to the Right. If you want to claim Lame Duck status now, be my guest. You pull a stunt like this and you can guarantee one thing, Democrats won't be voting for you again (and I'm a strong supporter now) in 2012. We wanted change, not inaction.

    January 26, 2010 04:02 am at 4:02 am |
  13. Preston k

    Pkm do not cut social security we need a raise ifwe do not get a raise if you cut ss i will be liveing with my wife in the car

    January 26, 2010 06:49 am at 6:49 am |
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