The White House's grim new budget projections, released Tuesday, show a decade-worth of deficits tallying $9.05 trillion, $2 trillion deeper than anticipated in February, the New York Times reports. Peter Orszag, the White House budget director, said ''the key driver of our long-term deficits'' is federal health spending, mainly on the ballooning Medicare and Medicaid programs, making health reform essential.
''Over all, it underscores the dire fiscal situation that we inherited and the need for serious steps to put our nation back on a sustainable fiscal path,'' Orszag said, asserting that this White House was confronting a Bush administration legacy (Calmes, 8/25).
''The biggest effect of the deficit numbers may be felt on the health-care debate. Deficit worries will force Democrats to put new emphasis on cost-cutting efforts in crafting health legislation, said Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D., N.Y.).
Source: Kaiser Health News