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Obama Says Everything Is 'On The Table' For Deficit Reduction

Saying that "everything has to be on the table," President Barack Obama just officially welcomed the members of his bipartisan Fiscal Commission to the White House, for the start of their politically treacherous task of coming up with a way to shrink the nation's rapidly exploding federal budget deficits.

Obama also said that because "everything" (which by definition includes tax hikes and spending cuts) is on that proverbial table, the news media is going to be asking "once a week or once a day about what we're willing to rule out or rule in."

"We're not playing that game," the president said. "I'm not going to say what's in; I'm not going to say what's out."

The commission, which is supposed to come up with some answers by next fall (after Election Day) is co-chaired by Democrat Erskine Bowles (White House chief of staff in the Clinton administration) and Republican Alan Simpson (a former senator from Wyoming).

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