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WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s new budget lays down the political themes he will pound as he campaigns for re-election: more spending on jobs and higher taxes for the wealthy. It sets him apart from the Republican contenders and gives Democrats a platform to run on.

And a target for GOP candidates to shoot at. In his $3.8 trillion spending plan for the budget year that begins Oct. 1, Obama levels direct criticism at Republicans. Though nobody is expecting the budget to be embraced by Congress, that’s still an unusual negotiating tactic in a usually dry document. It highlights the elevated political stakes.

“Unfortunately, Republicans in Congress blocked both our deficit reduction measures and almost every part of the American Jobs Act for the simple reason that they were unwilling to ask the wealthiest Americans to pay their fair share,” Obama said in his budget introduction.


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