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Obama, Worst Republican President,
Targets Social Security,
Medicare, and Medicaid

Feb. 15, 2011 (EIRNS)—This release was issued today by the Lyndon LaRouche Political Action Committee (LaRouche PAC)

President Obama's budget policy is nothing but a replay of his strategy on the Bush-era tax-cut-extension bill during the lame duck Congressional session last December. He, himself, made that clear in his press conference this morning, and House Democrat Jesse Jackson, Jr., reflecting a broader malaise against Obama among African-American political leaders, ripped into him for the cuts.

"The budget proposal from President Obama is right from the Republican plan," Jackson said in a statement released yesterday.

"This request for FY2012 opens the door for the huge cuts that Republicans are forcing us to digest for the rest of FY2011. How can we stop the Republican cuts when the President has one-upped them? As the President, he should be the last line of defense for the most vulnerable Americans, instead of the first one to cut." Jackson further charged that the cuts to the low-income heating-assistance program, the community development block grant program, and other social programs are being made to pay for the tax cuts to the wealthy. ""We need Presidential leadership to stand up to these cuts, and instead propose a jobs program that will end unemployment once and for all," Jackson concluded. "Instead of cutting vital programs for the neediest, which will literally leave poor people in the cold, we should be focusing on ending unemployment."

Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.), the chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, also panned Obama's budget during an interview on NPR yesterday, though not as strongly as Jackson. Cleaver credited Obama with trying to "reduce" the pain on the poor, but then separated himself from the President when he said, "I think, however, that we have a responsibility for protecting the vulnerable population," which now includes the millions of working people who have lost their jobs in the last three years.

Obama went out of his way this morning to answer Republican criticism that he was being too soft on entitlements, saying that cuts of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid are absolutely still on the table—but that he wanted to work with the Republicans to implement the cuts. "We did that in December during the lame duck on the tax-cut issues," Obama said.

"And my suspicion is, is that we're going to be able to do the same thing if we have that same attitude with respect to entitlements."

On health care, Obama claimed that the projected deficits are about $250 billion lower than they would have been without his health-care reform bill, "but we're still going to have to do more."

House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) wants far more blood than Obama has so far offered. He said that if Republicans "ignore the drivers of our debt, which are these entitlement programs, then we are no better than the President."