President Barack Obama is sending Congress a budget that would boost taxes on the wealthy and slash Medicare to make way for a $634 billion down payment on universal health care.
Obama's first budget predicts the deficit for this year will soar to a whopping $1.75 trillion, reflecting spending to pull the nation out of recession. The numbers come from administration officials who spoke on condition of anonymity before the budget is publicly unveiled Thursday.
As part of the effort to end the financial crisis, the administration will propose boosting the budget deficit by $250 billion this year. As much as $750 billion more could be spent under the government's financial rescue program. That would more than double the $700 billion bailout effort.