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President Prepares for Fiscal Summit

By: CBS
By: CBS

President Obama is preparing to outline his fiscal policy vision Wednesday. He's meeting with members of Congress in the morning before detailing his plan in public.

Congressional leaders are heading to the White House Wednesday morning, for a bipartisan budget meeting with President Obama.

The $38 billion in spending cuts agreed to late last week are the largest annual cuts ever, but they won't stop this year's deficit from setting another record high – an estimated $1.5 trillion.

“We fought for cuts, but they had to be smart cuts, cuts that would strengthen our economy instead of weaken it," said Sen. Harry Reid, D-Majority Leader.

Lawmakers are still smarting over those cuts, and even the President stated he wasn't completely pleased with the agreement, but the White House insists it's committed to getting the nation's finances in order.

“How we can take a balanced approach towards reducing our deficit in the long term while protecting the investments which will enable us to grow?" said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney.

That balanced approach takes on entitlement programs, defense spending and taxes, and not all of it is likely to fly on Capitol Hill.

Republican leaders have already voiced their opposition to tax increases.

"Taxes are not on the table because we don't have a revenue problem,” said Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Minority Leader. “We have a spending problem."

They're also not keen on raising the debt ceiling without something significant in return.

Political analysts say the president's plan will likely be a stark contrast to the proposal put forth last week by Republican congressman Paul Ryan, using a so-called scalpel, and not a machete, to make ends meet.

The spending bill covering the rest of the fiscal year is scheduled for a House vote Thursday. The Senate would follow later in the day or on Friday.


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