With Medicare already on the table, President Obama has signaled that the other big budgetary time bomb isn't safe from cuts: Social Security. The president is pressing congressional leaders to accept an ambitious plan to slash $4 trillion over the next decade, insiders say. He hopes to use the cuts to barter with the GOP to increase tax revenue, say sources. Both the cuts and tax hikes he envisions will put the White House at odds with major factions in both parties, but Obama will argue that there's a consensus that the deficit must be addressed.
"Obviously, there will be some Democrats who don’t believe we need to do entitlement reform. But there seems to be some hunger to do something of some significance,” a Democratic insider tells the Washington Post. “These moments come along at most once a decade. And it would be a real mistake if we let it pass us by." Top House Republicans, meanwhile, say they're not going to accept any rise in tax rates, but they're willing to discuss ending certain corporate tax breaks.