Wednesday, the President presented his 2014 budget plan, which
attempted to bring both parties to a compromise. It proposed changes to
Social Security and Medicare, modifying the way Social Security
calculates cost-of-living adjustments, which would result in significant
cost-savings. Several members of his party are criticizing the plan,
saying it puts too much of a burden on the poor and elderly.
the flip side, the proposal calls for $500 billion in additional tax
revenue over the next decade. While that’s significantly lower than the
nearly $1 trillion in tax increases outlined in the Senate’s Democratic
budget, Republicans refuse any increase.
the parties are still so far apart, House Budget Committee Chairman
Paul Ryan asserts that a smaller deal should be sought. “I don’t think
we should talk about a grand bargain,” he said. “A grand bargain implies
you can fix the entire problem … but we’re so far from that with what
the president has and the Senate has passed … that I think we should
rationalize our expectations to getting a down payment on the problem.”
That approach requires negotiations. And although a deal may still be a ways off, at least discussion is happening now.