Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner caused an uproar last weekend when he declined to explicitly rule out increasing taxes to help patch the nearly $1 trillion federal budget hole.
If that is how the administration plans to fix the deficit it will be contrary to President Obama’s pledge not to raise the tax burden on families making less than $250,000.
Speaking on ABC’s This Week, Geithner said the government has to bring down the deficits, which in addition to the budget gap also includes more than $800 billion in U.S. Treasury debt and over $2 trillion in total U.S. securities held by China, according to Reuters.
"That’s going to require some very hard choices," he added, and when pressed about whether this would entail a tax hike he said, " "We can’t make these judgments yet about exactly what it’s going to take and how we’re going to get there."
Amid the furor that followed, White House economic adviser Lawrence Summers sought to play it down, and on Monday the president’s spokesman said Obama was committed to keeping his promises on taxes.
During his electoral campaign Obama said he would cut taxes for 95 percent of working Americans.