White House seeks August 1st deadline for tax, federal health program reforms


President Obama has a  proposal to delay sequestration until August.


President Obama is seeking an Aug. 1 deadline for overhauling the tax code and making changes to expensive federal health programs, the final pieces of what the administration conceives as a far-reaching plan to rein in the national debt, senior administration officials said Friday. [...]

To ensure that Congress acts by Aug. 1, Obama is proposing to delay automatic spending cuts only through that date. The so-called sequester would then act as a new trigger to force congressional action. Delaying the sequester for eight months would cost about $80 billion, officials said. They recommended covering that cost with new spending cuts and tax hikes, but did not specify which ones.

As for changes to Medicare and Medicaid, some of the savings would come from higher premiums for high-income beneficiaries.