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The '98 Budget

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Republican Leaders Question Clinton's Budget

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Clinton Transcript: Feb. 6 Press Briefing

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Clinton Proposes A $1.69 Trillion Budget


In the past, Republicans have criticized the administration for attempting to defer the political pain of balancing the budget.

House Budget Chairman John Kasich (R-Ohio) promised a good look at Clinton's budget.

"We're going to have a lot of hearings, we're going to let people come up here and tell us about it," Kasich said.

"But I believe it will be necessary and proper and right for the Republicans, at least in the House, to move foward with a proposal that we stand behind, that we think will make more sense than the president's."

Kasich said the GOP will continue to press for general tax relief, rather than the targeted tax credits that Clinton has proposed for education.


Clinton's savings would come primarily from Medicare, defense and other domestic programs. Clinton proposes to dip into those savings to restore some of the $55 billion cut in last year's welfare overhaul legislation. Clinton would restore about one-third of those cuts, with the money to be used mostly for legal immigrants' lost benefits and food stamps but also for job training.

On taxes, Clinton's budget would honor his campaign promise to offer a $500 tax credit for children 12 or younger, a $1,500 tax credit to pay for the first two years of college and tax deductions covering up to $10,000 in education expenses for many families.

These middle class tax cuts, which would be phased in, would total $98 billion. To partially offset the lost revenue, Clinton proposed $76 billion in tax increases, primarily through limiting certain tax breaks received by corporations and reinstating the 10 percent tax on airline tickets, which expired December 31.

Clinton's tax cut proposals contain only a $1.5 billion reduction in capital gains taxes, which Clinton limits to profits made on home sales.

Republicans want to halve the capital gains tax on the sale of all assets. Their tax cut program totals $193 billion. Congressional Republican sources say the president's budget has too much spending and too few tax cuts, but they are not calling the plan dead on arrival on Capitol Hill.

The president will visit Capitol Hill next week to talk it over.

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