What's next in the looming budget crisis?
(CBS News) WASHINGTON -- We are nine days from the next national self-inflicted budget crisis: big, across-the-board cuts in the federal budget will hit automatically on March 1. The cuts are designed to be so deep and damaging that they would force the president and Congress to compromise on a better way.
"These cuts are not smart, they are not fair, they will hurt our economy, they will add hundreds of thousands of Americans to the unemployment rolls," President Barack Obama said Tuesday. "This is not an abstraction. People will lose their jobs. The unemployment rate might tick up again."
Watch: Obama warns of the dangers of the "sequester," below.
Obama wants more tax revenue, but Republicans say no. Both sides say it's up to the other to give in.
There will be a continued effort by the White House to apply public pressure on Republicans to relent. This will be done in public, in events such as Obama's speech Tuesday; it's already been done privately.
Top government officials are warning businesses they could be harmed by these looming spending cuts. For example, last Friday, top officials at the Agriculture Department warned meat and poultry producers that there might not be enough federal inspectors to keep their processing plants open and operating.
These are designed to motivate businesses to plead with Republicans to find another way. For now, Republicans appear prepared to take these spending cuts, because they say they will argue to the public they're more serious about deficit reduction than President Obama.
There are currently no behind-the-scenes negotiations between the White House and Republicans. Republicans say this is President Obama's problem and that he needs to solve it with new spending cuts, because they refuse to raise taxes again this year.
As for talks, the top aide to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor joked Tuesday that President Obama has spent more time playing golf with Tiger Woods than he has negotiating with congressional Republicans.
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