U.S. President Barack Obama says his
proposed $3.6 trillion budget is an "economic blueprint" for the country's
In his weekly address Saturday, the president says the proposal calls for investments in energy, education and health care that will lead to "a real and lasting prosperity."
He also says the budget will cut the deficit in half by the end of his first term.
In the Republicans' weekly address, Governor Haley Barbour of the southern U.S. state of Mississippi criticized the budget proposal, saying it "spends too much, taxes too much and borrows too much."
On Friday, the Congressional Budget Office warned that the U.S. budget deficit will balloon to more than $1.8 trillion for the 2009 fiscal year ending September 30. The U.S. budget experts also say the president's proposed budget will produce $9.3 trillion in deficits over the next decade.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs says the new numbers do not change the president's plans.
Meanwhile, the Obama administration is setting tough guidelines to ensure economic stimulus dollars are spent on worthy projects.
In remarks to state officials gathered at the White House Friday, Mr. Obama said the initiatives that will get priority must show they can create jobs or provide other "enduring benefits to the American people."
Some state governors have been reluctant to allow projects funded by the $787 billion economic recovery act. They cite concerns that their states could be left paying for the projects once federal funding runs out.
Some information for this report was provided by AP.