President Obama today contradicted a statement he made during the campaign, suggesting during an East Room news conference that upcoming negotiations over the budget could well fail and massive spending cuts – known as the “sequester” or the “fiscal cliff” – could kick in.
“We can all imagine a scenario where we go over the fiscal cliff,” Obama said today.
But during his third debate with Gov. Mitt Romney, Obama said that the dire scenario did not have a chance of occurring.
“First of all, the sequester is not something that I’ve proposed,” Obama said then. “It is something that Congress has proposed. It will not happen.”
Obama during the debate was eager to minimize the chances of going over the fiscal cliff because Romney had noted that it would force massive defense spending cuts. During the debate, Obama repeatedly tried to compare his experience with Romney’s by noting he was the Commander in Chief.
After Obama had concluded the news conference, but before he walked off the podium, a Bloomberg News reporter attempted to follow up by noting the contrast with his statement during the debate. But Obama refused to answer, saying he didn’t want a set a precedent by taking questions from reporters out of turn, and promptly left the room.