At his inaugural address last week, President Obama outlined several key points for his second term policy agenda, which read like a progressive’s dream wish list: reform immigration, tackle climate change, support gay rights, and push for gun control.
On the issue of entitlement spending, Obama defended programs such as Social Security and Medicare in his address and said they “do not make us a nation of takers” but instead “make us stronger.” Not surprisingly, the president’s most vociferous critics slammed this and similar statements that seemed reject the idea of entitlement reform as a policy issue for his second term.
But on the sidelines, several liberal think tanks in Washington have drawn up plans to help reform entitlements, according to a recent post in Politico, which could allow Obama to broach the issue without infuriating his base. On Sunday, a Washington Post editorial said Obama could make history by achieving a grand bargain with conservatives on government spending.
Former U.S. Senator Bob Bennett joined an audience at The George Washington University this week to talk about America’s looming budget crisis. The Utah Republican said Obama could set any agenda he so chooses as long as he works to curb entitlements.