President Obama will unveil a budget Wednesday that includes reforms to entitlements such as Social Security and Medicare. The budget probably won't pass, but it points to a shift in the debate.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP
President Obama's new budget proposal, expected to be released Wednesday, is a sign that Washington's attitude toward entitlement reform is slowly shifting, with prospects for changes to Social Security and Medicare becoming increasingly likely – if not this year, then soon.
Mr. Obama's budget would adjust the way Social Security payments are stepped up for inflation each year, saving the federal government $100 billion or more over 10 years, while also finding $400 billion in cost savings from Medicare and Medicaid.
The budget is not likely to pass Congress. In fact, the president himself has warned that getting a deal done this year looks very hard. But his plan suggests that some Democrats – who have been traditionally loath to tinker with entitlements – are acknowledging the mounting economic pressures.
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