It didn’t take Republicans long to respond to President Obama’s record $4.1 trillion budget proposal – labeling it “a progressive manual for growing the federal government at the expense of hardworking Americans,” as House Speaker Paul Ryan put it.
The fiscal 2017 budget plan, Obama’s eighth and final spending blueprint, is being met with a dead-on-arrival mentality on Capitol Hill after it was released late Tuesday morning.
As the president proposes a raft of new taxes, though, he’s also looking to drive the debate on cybersecurity and other big issues. One of the largest items is a request for $19 billion to combat cyber threats, an increase of $5 billion from last time.
Cybersecurity funding is an issue that has won bipartisan support from lawmakers in the past, and the appeal for funds comes amid mounting threats from China, Russia and beyond. After meeting with his national security team and cybersecurity advisers, Obama told reporters one of the biggest gaps between the government and private sector is information technology “and it makes everyone’s security vulnerable.”
But Republicans described the overall plan as a bid to grow government even bigger. In all, Obama’s budget would increase taxes by $2.6 trillion over the coming decade, nearly double the $1.4 trillion in new taxes Obama sought and failed to achieve in last year’s budget.