White House defends stimulus plan - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

White House defends stimulus plan

The team that drew up President Obama's $3.5 trillion budget plan testified in its defense on Capitol Hill.

While the budget director says it's not a big spending budget, many lawmakers disagree, arguing the plan wildly taxes, spends, and builds a mountain of debt.

The White House says the budget needs to be bold and tackle long-term problems in healthcare, education and energy.  But proposals like the president's plan to tax greenhouse gas polluting-industries, to pay for a middle class tax credit, has critics complaining of a nationwide increase in electricity costs.

"What Americans won't end up paying more for virtually every item they purchase because of this higher tax on energy?" said Rep. Dave Campe, R-Michigan.

"The president's proposal is to take these resources and use them to finance making permanent a tax reduction that will benefit 95 percent of working Americans," said Timothy Geithner, Tresury secretary.

Mr. Obama announced another initiative he says will help the ailing economy.  The Treasury and the Federal Reserve launched the Consumer and Business Lending initiative.  Its goal is to generate up to a trillion dollars of new lending to help unlock frozen credit markets.  The program starts on March 17th.

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