Prior to the fiscal cliff deal, President Barack Obama scolded Congress for cobbling together a plan at the last minute.
“America wonders why it is in this town why you can’t get stuff done in an organized timetable,” said Mr. Obama. “Why everything has to always wait until the last minute. We’re now at the last minute. The American people are not going to have any patience for a politically self-inflicted wound to our economy.”
“Let’s not miss this deadline,” Obama said. “That’s the bare minimum we should be able to get done.”
But now, with the president’s legally-required budget due in just 19 days, all eyes are on the White House to see whether Mr. Obama will meet the February 4th deadline, something he has only done once since becoming president.
In December, the White House told Politico that it was deliberately slow walking Mr. Obama’s fiscal 2014 budget. Last week, House Budget Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) wrote a letter asking Acting Budget Director Jeff Zients whether the White House will once again miss the budget deadline:
“Given the critical importance of addressing our nation’s fiscal problems, I am writing to ask whether the President will submit his budget request this year on or before February 4 as required by law,” Ryan wrote in a letter to Acting Budget Director Jeff Zients. “If the Administration does not plan to meet the statutory deadline, when do you anticipate the request being made?”
An Obama Administration source told The Hill this month that “no decisions” have been made on the timing of Mr. Obama’s budget.
According to Mr. Ryan’s office, Mr. Obama has missed the legally required budget deadline more than any U.S. president since the 1920s.