Democrats Promise Budget Surpluses

The house budget committee has approved a 3-trillion-dollar budget plan for 2009.
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Capitol Hill (AP) The house budget committee has approved a 3-trillion-dollar budget plan for 2009.

The democratic blueprint passed on a party line vote early Thursday. It would produce sizable surpluses by 2012 by allowing President Bush's tax cuts to expire as scheduled.

It would also award greater-than-inflation increases to domestic programs. That immediately earned a promise from the White House that Bush would veto spending hikes that show up in agency budgets.

The Senate Budget Committee plans a vote Thursday on a largely similar plan.

Bush claimed victory in last year's budget standoff with Congress and is eager to bring lawmakers to heel again. As a result, democrats are signaling they do not intend to send him many spending bills this year. They prefer to deal with his successor, who they hope will be a democrat, after Bush leaves office next January.