The failure to meet the deadline was not new. Under federal law, the president is required to release a budget for the following fiscal year sometime between the first Monday in January and the first Monday in February. For three years running, President Obama hasn’t submitted the document on time. (And, for three years running, Republicans have pounced on the delay.) Here are the excuses the White House has given each year:
2013: Blame Congress
This year, the White House pushed the blame onto Congress and its inability to avert, ahead of time, the impact of the fiscal cliff, the massive combined tax hikes and spending cuts scheduled to go into effect right around the end of 2012. Jeffrey Zients, director of the White House’s Office of Management and Budget, explained the delay in a Jan. 11 letter to House Budget Committee Chairman and former vice presidential hopeful Paul Ryan.
"As you know, the protracted 'fiscal-cliff' negotiations ... created considerable uncertainty about revenue and spending for 2013 and beyond," Zients wrote. "[B]ecause these issues were not resolved until the American Taxpayer Relief Act was enacted on Jan. 2, 2013, the administration was forced to delay some of its FY 2014 budget preparations, which in turn will delay the budget's submission to Congress."
When asked whether the budget would come before or after the president’s Feb. 12 State of the Union address, White House press secretary Jay Carney on Monday said only, “I don’t have a date for you for when that will happen.”