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Did 'sequester' backfire? Obama calls for 'smarter solution.'

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Obama added that the proposals he put forward during the fiscal-cliff negotiations late last year are “still very much on the table.” But the sticking point with Republicans is still there: higher tax revenues. Republican leaders say they’re done with tax hikes, having conceded an increase in the tax rate for the wealthiest Americans from 35 percent to 39.6 percent in the fiscal-cliff deal.

“The deals that I put forward, the balanced approach of spending cuts and entitlement reform and tax reform that I put forward, are still on the table,” Obama said, touting “sensible reforms” to Medicare and other entitlement programs, as well as savings in health care.

Republican leaders in Congress were not impressed. The White House had put out advance notice of the president’s proposal, and even before Obama spoke, House Speaker John Boehner rejected it.

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