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Obama points to India and China to sell deficit cut plan

world Updated: Apr 22, 2011 22:27 IST
Yashwant Raj
Yashwant Raj
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

US President Barack Obama is increasingly using India to sell his deficit reduction plan to his country — it was competition from Indian kids on Thursday and it was affordable medical care earlier in the week.

"In a world where our kids are going to be facing tougher competition than ever before, where you've got hundreds of millions of Chinese kids and Indian kids and Brazilian kids and Eastern European kids, all who are trying to compete for the jobs of tomorrow, how are we not going to invest in making sure our kids have the best skills possible?"

He said this addressing a town hall meeting in Nevada.

Obama has proposed a plan to cut deficit by $ 4 trillion over a decade. The Republicans agree with the target but not with the rest of his plan – essentially what should be cut.

Obama wants to raise taxes – remove tax cuts – cut some defense spending to get there. He doesn't want to touch social spending on education and medicare for the elderly and the poor.

The Republicans disagree. They don't want to raise taxes — and want to retain the cuts — but want to severely cut money the federal government spends on medicare and education. And not touch defense spending.

The President made the pitch about Indian kids in that context — to pitch his plan which wants to retain spending on education, arguing the cuts shouldn't impact adversely, America's leadership of the world.

And spending on education and innovation plays a larger part of this vision, he has said, of keeping America at the top of the chart – it forms also of his larger plan of rejuvenating the economy.

At another town hall earlier in the week, Obama had said he wants to prevent Americans from seeking cheaper and affordable medical treatment in India – by using his health care plan to bring down medical costs in the US.