Obama budget to offer program cuts, seek deficit deal: Official

WASHINGTON - US President Barack Obama will offer cuts to Social Security and other entitlement programs in a budget proposal aimed at swaying Republicans to compromise on a deficit reduction deal to put the country's finances on a sounder footing, a senior administration official said on Friday.

The president will offer to apply a less generous measure of inflation to calculate cost-of-living increases, the official said on condition of anonymity. That change would result in lower payments to some beneficiaries of the Social Security programme for retirees.

Obama would agree to cuts to other so-called entitlement programs, the official said.

But the president will only accept these spending cuts if congressional Republicans, for their part, agree to higher taxes, the official added. The president's budget proposal, due to be laid out in full on Wednesday, would cut the deficit by US$1.8 trillion (S$2.23 trillion) over ten years, the aide said.

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