ABC News’ Mary Bruce (@marykbruce) Reports:
In his weekly address, President Obama once again urges Republicans and Democrats to compromise on a “balanced approach” to reduce the deficit through spending cuts and tax increases, telling Americans “that kind of cooperation should be the least you expect from us – not the most you expect from us.”
“Simply put, it will take a balanced approach, shared sacrifice, and a willingness to make unpopular choices on all our part,” Obama says. “That means spending less on domestic programs. It means spending less on defense programs. It means reforming programs like Medicare to reduce costs and strengthen the program for future generations. And it means taking on the tax code, and cutting out certain tax breaks and deductions for the wealthiest Americans.”
The president continues to push for a “big deal” to reduce the deficit through spending cuts and revenue increases. “The truth is, you can’t solve our deficit without cutting spending. But you also can’t solve it without asking the wealthiest Americans to pay their fair share – or without taking on loopholes that give special interests and big corporations tax breaks that middle-class Americans don’t get.”
“We shouldn’t put the burden of deficit reduction on the backs of folks who’ve already borne the brunt of the recession. It’s not reasonable and it’s not right. If we’re going to ask seniors, or students, or middle-class Americans to sacrifice, then we have to ask corporations and the wealthiest Americans to share in that sacrifice. We have to ask everyone to play their part. Because we are all part of the same country. We are all in this together,” he says.
With the August 2nd deadline to raise the nation’s $14.3 debt ceiling rapidly approaching, the President reiterates that he’s proved he’s willing to compromise. “I’m willing to do what it takes to solve this problem, even if it’s not politically popular. And I expect leaders in Congress to show that same willingness to compromise,” he says.
The president says the debate should be viewed as an opportunity to reduce the deficit as much as possible and solve the problem in a “real and comprehensive way.”
“You work hard, you do what’s right, and you expect leaders who do the same,” Obama says. “You expect us to get this right. To put America back on firm economic ground. To forge a healthy, growing economy. To create new jobs and rebuild the lives of the middle class. And that’s what I’m committed to doing.”