Erskine Bowles: Obama Budget Is 'Substantial Step Forward'

04/15/2013 02:42 pm ET | Updated Jun 15, 2013

ORLANDO, Fla. — Erskine Bowles, who chaired President Barack Obama's deficit commission three years ago, says Obama's recent budget proposal offers the "seeds of hope" for a Washington budget deal.

Bowles said Obama's budget is a "substantial step forward" because the president takes on Democratic sacred cows like Social Security with a plan to curb the annual cost-of-living benefit increases of the program.

But Bowles, author of a painful 2010 deficit plan mostly shunned by Obama, says he's coming out with a new plan on Friday with deeper cuts to Medicare and the Pentagon than Obama is proposing. He said Obama's plan doesn't go far enough to curb the growth of the government's debt.

Bowles made his remarks Monday at the annual meeting of The Associated Press.

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