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Now the real fight begins

Earl Ofari Hutchinson | 2/1/2011, 8:49 a.m.

Budget analysts and political experts have already branded the multi-billions that the GOP says can and should be hacked from federal spending as pie-in-the-sky political rhetoric. This is the same GOP that has virtually institutionalized earmarks, pork barrel spending, and given the company store away in tax breaks and in spending to the defense industry. The GOP draconian budget reduction plan would wreak havoc on vital arts, education, health care, transportation, small business lending and support and programs.

That’s just the dollars and cents of the talk of massive spending cuts. The real battleground is the political war that the GOP intends to wage against the Obama administration to hack away at federal programs. Obama acknowledged that despite the congressional calm and civility during his State of the Union address that the fight over spending and jobs versus cutting the debt will be fierce. The fight won’t be long in coming. Obama will unveil his budget proposal for the 2012 fiscal year on Feb. 13, The GOP almost certainly will scream, nitpick, and slam the spending proposal as too big, and burdensome, and will step up the attack on Obama as a tax and spend Democrat who will continue to bloat the deficit.

President Obama in his address repeatedly struck the theme that bipartisan unity is needed to solve the nation’s problems, first and foremost meaning creating jobs and growing the economy. However, with the GOP gearing up for a full court press to take back the White House in 2012, and the GOP banking on using spending and the federal deficit as its political trump cards against Obama, GOP and Democratic congresspersons sitting together is one thing, working together, as Obama noted is a far different thing.

Earl Ofari Hutchinson is an author and political analyst.