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Budget czar downplays differences between Congress and Obama

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With President Barack Obama’s budget proposals being criticized even by members of his own party, Office of Management and Budget Director Peter Orszag sought to minimize differences with House and Senate budget blueprints saying the documents were, if not identical twins, at least “brothers that look a lot alike.”

The president is slated to meet later in the day with members of the Senate Democratic Caucus, and criticism of his budget was on subject at the president’s prime time press conference Tuesday evening. Both House and Senate budget panels begin work on the federal budget for 2010 today.

Focus on the similarities

Initial House and Senate budget drafts are “fully in line with the president’s key proposals,” Orszag said on a conference call with reporters. “The big story is how similar these things are.”

After the Obama administration released its budget, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, which Orszag used to lead, released an estimate saying the Obama spending plan would produce $9.3 trillion in red ink over the next ten years, more than OMB had projected.

Trimming Obama's plan

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