President Barack Obama visited a family’s home near Washington Thursday as part of his campaign to persuade Congress to pass his economic plan.
Obama paid a visit to Tiffany and Richard Santana, who responded to his call asking Americans to use social media to express support for his fiscal plan.
Americans will face substantial tax increases and government budget cuts on Jan. 1 if Congress does not pass and the president does not sign legislation to reduce the nation’s debt.
Obama said failure to enact fiscal legislation would cost a typical American family, such as the Santanas, $2,000 a year in higher taxes.
“An increase of $2,000 or so for her and her husband, in this household, would actually mean $4,000 that was lost. And a couple of thousand dollars means a couple months rent,” he said.
The president said higher taxes for families across the country would cause a ripple effect throughout the U.S. economy.
“That translates into $200 billion of less consumer spending next year. And that is bad for businesses, large and small. It is bad for our economy. It means less folks are being hired. And we could be back in a downward spiral instead of the kind of virtuous cycle that we want to see,” he said.
Wednesday the president and the speaker of the House of Representatives, Republican John Boehner, discussed the issue in a telephone call.
Democrats and Republicans agree that more revenue must be raised to help reduce the national debt, which stands at more than $16 trillion. But Republicans oppose the president’s proposal to raise tax rates on the wealthiest Americans to close the gap.
Obama has been making his case to the public, hoping that Americans will pressure Republicans in Congress to accept the president’s plan.