By a more than 2-to-1 margin, GEN readers favor President Barack Obama’s budget proposal over that of the chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on the Budget, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), and fellow House Republicans. More than half (57.6%) of respondents side with the president compared with over a quarter of respondents (25.8%) who side instead with Ryan. Another 15.2% support neither Obama nor Ryan, while 1.5% were undecided.
Congressional squabbling over the federal budget for the 2013 fiscal year goes beyond the usual details of agency-by-agency spending to the overlaying question of how large the overall budget should be. On March 29, Ryan got his plan passed in the Republican-controlled House on a mostly party-line vote of 228–191. HCR 112 incorporates “Path to Prosperity,” introduced last year, which calls for overall spending of $3.53 trillion, including $1.028 trillion in nondefense discretionary spending. The nondefense discretionary spending cap is $19 billion below the $1.047 trillion level set under the Budget Control Act (BCA). The GOP budget blueprint envisions a $797 billion shortfall based on revenues of $2.734 trillion. President Obama’s $3.717 trillion budget proposal for FY 2013 includes a $977 billion deficit on $2.741 trillion in revenue.