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Thu Nov 29, 2012, 08:26 AM

Senate's No. 2 Democrat calls for cuts to social safety net [View all]

Source: McClatchy

Senate's No. 2 Democrat calls for cuts to social safety net
By LISA MASCARO AND CHRISTI PARSONS | Tribune Washington Bureau
Posted on Thursday, November 29, 2012

WASHINGTON A top Democrat pressured fellow progressives Tuesday to consider long-term changes to the social safety net, even as the party digs in for a fight to save Medicare and other government programs from deep budget cuts.

As closed-door talks continue with the hope of a year-end deal, President Barack Obama will travel to a Pennsylvania toy store this week to pressure Congress to extend the expiring tax cuts for the middle class, while letting those for the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans expire. Republicans are similarly taking their proposal of tax breaks for all on the road.

At the same time, Sen. Richard J. Durbin of Illinois, the No. 2 Democrat, tapped his ties to the liberal wing of the party to urge a broader deficit deal in 2013 that would include trims to Medicare and other entitlement cuts.

"We can't be so naive to believe that just taxing the rich will solve our problems," said Durbin, speaking at the influential liberal group called Center for American Progress. "Put everything on the table. Repeat. Everything on the table."


Read more: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2012/11/29/175856/senates-no-2-democrat-calls-for.html

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