I am assuming you don't dispute that our nation faces a very serious financial problem, with unfunded liabilities in excess of $100 trillion. I use the word "assuming" because I don't remember you ever spending much time talking about this problem, which is odd because the very subject haunts so many Americans and makes them fearful for the future of this country.
Yet if you do recognize that these liabilities threaten our nation's solvency, how is it conceivable that you've not made the problem one of your foremost priorities? Yes, you established a bipartisan deficit commission, but you refused to meet with it and you ignored its findings, so that doesn't get you off the hook.
When Rep. Paul Ryan presented his "Path to Prosperity" and the Republican Congress passed a budget largely along the lines Ryan proposed, you publicly ridiculed Ryan, and your Democratic-controlled Senate summarily rejected the bill.
When Ryan questioned your treasury secretary, Timothy Geithner, about entitlements and our national debt, Geithner claimed that the administration stabilized the deficit and debt issues over the next 10 years but admitted that you have no plans for attacking the long-term problem. But what Geithner refers to as stabilization actually amounts to adding approximately $1 trillion per year to our national debt over the next decade, which, incidentally, makes your statement that you would not add a dime to the national debt just outright bizarre -- and disturbing.
More troubling, though, than the $10 trillion your budget admits you'd add to the debt over the next 10 years is Geithner's brazen confession that you have no plan to tackle the explosion of our unfunded liabilities. When Ryan pressed Geithner on that point, Geithner merely responded that he and you didn't like Ryan's plan, because it wouldn't adequately protect seniors and middle-income earners. But as you know, Mr. President, that is also blatantly false. Ryan's plan carves out special protection for those groups. You must know, unless you are as negligent about informing yourself on Republican ideas you oppose as you are regarding national security matters, that Ryan's plan would preserve Medicare benefits exactly as they are for those who are now at least 55 years of age. But you keep saying otherwise.
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