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In his final budget, Barack Obama proposes tax hike for wealthy Americans

Associated Press

Last Updated: February 10, 2016, 07:42 IST

In his final budget, Barack Obama proposes tax hike for wealthy Americans

Washington: President Barack Obama proposed new taxes on wealthy Americans in his final $4.15-trillion budget, as he informed the Congress about the path-breaking defence ties with India as part of its Asia-Pacific rebalance.

In his budgetary proposals running into 170 pages, Obama said the Department of Defence continues to develop its India ties through Defence Technology and Trade Initiative, Joint Working Group on Aircraft Carrier Technology Cooperation, and Jet Engine Technology Joint Working Group.

Obama said the budget supports his commitment to a comprehensive regional strategy in Asia and the Pacific that reinforces a rules-based order and advances security.

Recognising that security in the Asia-Pacific region underpins regional and global prosperity, the budget aligns resources and activities to strengthen US alliances and partnerships with emerging powers, promote regional economic cooperation, and build a constructive relationship with China that simultaneously supports expanding practical cooperation on global issues while candidly addressing differences.

In his message to the Congress, Obama said his budget is about looking forward. "It is about making sure our economy works for everybody, not just those at the top."

The White House said by cutting tax loopholes and special breaks for the wealthy, reforming business and capital gains taxes, and adding a $10 a barrel tax on crude oil, the deficit can be held below 3% of GDP.

In his final budgetary proposal, Obama said: "It is about answering the big questions that will define America and the world in the 21st Century."

Unlike India's parliamentary system, where the annual budget is proposed by the Union Finance Minister before the Lok Sabha, in the American presidential system the President submits his budgetary proposals as a written document.

The budget proposed is for the fiscal year 2016-2017 beginning October 1. The US Congress - both the House of Representatives and the Senate - would debate threadbare over the next several months before it passes the budget.

Among other things, the budget includes goals like cutting carbon pollution, universal preschool and criminal justice reform as well as billions in new investments in cybersecurity and clean energy.

Obama proposes to step up the policing of Wall Street, with USD 1.8 billion to double the budgets of market watchdogs in the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Budget provides $1.3 billion to advance the goals of the Global Climate Change Initiative (GCCI) through important multilateral and bilateral engagement.

While providing over $11 billion to defeat the Islamic State group, the budget includes resources to reinforce Afghanistan's security and development by supporting military assistance, as well as health, education, economic growth and other assistance programmes needed to promote stability.

The Republican leadership were quick to dismiss Obama's budget.

"President Obama will leave office having never proposed a budget that balances-ever. This isn't even a budget so much as it is a progressive manual for growing the federal government at the expense of hardworking Americans," said Paul Ryan, Speaker of the US House of Representatives.

"The president's oil tax alone would raise the average cost of gasoline by 24 cents per gallon, while hurting jobs and a major sector of our economy. Americans deserve better.

We need to tackle our fiscal problems before they tackle us. House Republicans are working on a balanced budget that grows our economy in order to secure a Confident America," Ryan said.

(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed)
first published:February 10, 2016, 07:42 IST
last updated:February 10, 2016, 07:42 IST