msnbc.com news services
updated 1/25/2011 3:46:14 PM ET 2011-01-25T20:46:14

A White House official says President Barack Obama will call for a five-year freeze in non-security, discretionary spending during his State of the Union address.

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The official says the proposal will be part of the president's plans to reduce the deficit that he will outline in Tuesday's primetime address. The official says Obama will also call for lawmakers to back a five-year plan put forth by Defense Secretary Robert Gates to save $78 billion in defense spending.

Video: Obama to propose 5 year spending freeze (on this page)

"In areas outside the freeze, we also will be looking for cuts and efficiencies," a senior White House official told NBC News.

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Obama is under pressure from the public and lawmakers to cut spending. Several Republican lawmakers have proposed cutting $100 billion from Obama's budget for the current year.

The move is almost identical to the freeze Obama called for in his address to the nation last year at this time — his current proposal would cover five years, not three years — and ultimately it may have little effect. Congress decides the budget on its own terms, and Obama has even less sway than he did in his first two years on the job now that Republicans have taken control of the House.

Vote: Will you watch the State of the Union?

The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly ahead of the president's speech.

NBC News' Chuck Todd contributed to this story.

© 2013 msnbc.com

Video: Obama to propose 5 year spending freeze

  1. Closed captioning of: Obama to propose 5 year spending freeze

    >>> as president obama left the oval office a couple of hours ago he talked about how his speech is coming together.

    >> i think it will be okay. i hope so, anyway.

    >> you got a copy?

    >> you know, maybe we can arrange that.

    >> we know tonight's speech before joint session of congress will lay out the president's vision for america's future. among the proposals being reported, a five-year freeze on spending. this morning on " morning joe "s, valerie jarrett outlined some of the other elements.

    >> tonight's all about winning the future, making sure that the united states is competitive, investing in inno vation, education, infrastructure, tightening our belts, joe, this will appeal to you, making sure we are responsible of bringing down the deficit.

    >> joining me now, norah o'donnell. reducing deficits, the focus. but we also know the president does not plan to cut spending with social security or raise the retirement age. progressives happy about that, republicans likely to take a swing at it.

    >> reporter: no doubt about that. as you reported, tamron, we've learned here at nbc news, the president is going to propose this five-year freeze on nonsecurity discretionary spending . that will mean cuts for people, a freeze. that's a big move certainly. then, when it comes to defense issues, the president is going to endorse a plan by secretary of defense gates to cut $78 billion in defense spending . and they're going to look at other waste and inefficiency in government. so i think that's going to be a big headline from tonight's speech. certainly what the white house wants to be a big headline. this is part of the president's effort to kick off his 2012 campaign and brand himself as a fiscal conservative and appeal, once again to independents. you heard valerie jarrett, tamron, talk about outcompeting, being the best nation in the world, we can outcompete any other nation. that's why they're talking about five pillar of innovation, education, infrastructure, deficit reduction, reforming government, all to quote/unquote win the future. this is an appeal to patriotism in many ways. we are better than anybody else. how do we prove that? how do we make sure america maintains its number one standing in the world? i think that's part of what the president's going to do and what it's expected to an hour-long speech, i'm told. other areas, i think to watch for tonight, will the president mention gun control at all? certainly in the wake of the arizona shooting, they're are a number of the victims and the families of the victims sitting noex mrs. obama in the first lady's box. a number of groups have been very furiously lobbying the president to tackle the issue of gun control . i spoke today with the head of the brady campaign , and he told me, quote if obama doesn't say something about gun control , people are going to notice. he has ducked it again. i think the other big question people have is on some of these recommendations. the president, in last year's state of the union , proposed a fiscal commission. he had a fiscal commission. they laid out all these details how to cut the deficit and the president has yet to endorse any of the controversial recommendations by his own commission. so we don't think he's going to do this on social security . what will he do in terms of taking tough step when it comes to the entitlements that are the bulk of the concerns when it comes to our deficit.

    >> we should mention paul ryan will deliver the gop response five minutes after the president completes his state of the union address . 60 or so

Explainer: State of the union: by the numbers

  • After President Barack Obama's delivery of the annual State of the Union address to Congress, here is a look at some of the facts and figures that shape American life and how they have changed in the past decade (based on the latest available data, compiled from multiple sources).

  • Economy and Business

    Unemployed workers, January 2000: 4.0%
    Unemployed workers, January 2011: 9.4%

    Dow Industrial Average, Jan. 25, 2000:11,029
    Dow Industrial Average, Jan. 20, 2011:11,822

    U.S. federal debt, September 2000:$5,674,178,209,886
    U.S. federal debt, September 2010:$13,561,623,030,891

    Median new home price, January 2000: $163,500
    Median new home price, November 2010: $213,000

    Household income (top 5%), 2000:$252,400
    Household income (top 5%), 2009:$295,388

    Household income (bottom 5%), 2000:$10,157
    Household income (bottom 5%), 2009:$11,552

    Total U.S. population, 2000: 281,421,906
    Total U.S. population, 2010:308,745,538

    Number of U.S. millionaires, 2000:6.3 million
    Number of U.S. millionaires, 2010:7.8 million

    Price of admission to Forbes 400 list, 2000:$725 million
    Price of admission to Forbes 400 list, 2010:$1 billion

  • Politics

    Congressional approval, December 2000:55% approve; 30% disapprove     
    Congressional approval, September 2010:
    20% approve, 73% disapprove

    Confidence in national news media, December 2000:40% have little or no confidence
    Confidence in national news media, January 2011:42% have little or no confidence

    Confidence in the federal government, December 2000:19% have little or no confidence
    Confidence in the federal government, January 2010:
    35% have little or no confidence

    Hispanic/Latino electorate in 2000 election:7%
    Hispanic/Latino electorate in 2008 election:9%

    Women serving in Congress, 2000: 67
    Women serving in Congress, 2011: 93

    African-American members in U.S. Senate, 2000:0
    African-American members in U.S. Senate, 2011:0

  • Health

    Life expectancy at birth, 2000:76.8 years
    Life expectancy at birth, 2010:78.3 years, projected

    Number of uninsured Americans, 2000: 38.4 million
    Number of uninsured Americans, 2010:
    50.7 million

    Cancer deaths, all causes, 2000:553,091
    Cancer deaths, all causes, 2010:
    569,490

  • Travel

    Average price of a gallon of gas, 2000:$1.51/gallon
    Average price of a gallon of gas, 2011:
    $3.08/gallon

    Average airfare, 2000:$339
    Average airfare, 2011: $335 (through second quarter of 2010)

    First-bag fee, 2000: None
    First-bag fee, 2010:$20-25 (on most major U.S. carriers)

    Average hotel, 2000:$85.89/night
    Average hotel, 2011:$97.89/night (through September 2010)

    One-day ticket to Walt Disney World, 2000:$46
    One-day ticket to Walt Disney World, 2011:$82

  • Tech and Science

    Google searches per day, 2000: 30 million
    Google searches per day, 2011:
    Over 1 billion

    Wireless phone subscribers in U.S., 2000:97 million (34% of population)
    Wireless phone subscribers in U.S., 2011:293 million (93% of population)

    Facebook users, worldwide, 2000: 0
    Facebook users, worldwide, 2011:600 million

    Federal spending on research and development, 2000:$99 billion (actual spending)
    Federal spending on research and development, 2011:$148 billion (proposed)

    NASA science missions in operation, 2000: 38
    NASA science missions in operation, 2011:67

  • Education

    Public schools that require student uniforms, 1999-2000:12%
    Public schools that require student uniforms, 2007-2008:18%

    Public schools reporting the use of one or more security cameras, 1999-2000:19%
    Public schools reporting the use of one or more security cameras, 2007-2008:55%

    Nationwide graduation rates at public high schools, 2000-2001:71.7%
    Nationwide graduation rates at public high schools, 2007-2008:74.9%

    Average salary for public high school teachers, 1999-2000:$42,546
    Average salary for public high school teachers, 2008-2009:$53,724

    Minorities enrolled in 4-year institutions, 2000:1.5 million
    Minorities enrolled in 4-year institutions, 2007:1.8 million

    Average college tuition for 4-year private institutions, 1999-2000:$20,706
    Average college tuition for 4-year private institutions, 2009-2010:$26,273

    Science and math literacy (U.S. ranking on OECD PISA test given to 15-year-olds), 2000:14th in science, 19th in math
    Science and math literacy (U.S. ranking on OECD PISA test given to 15-year-olds), 2009:23rd in science, 31st in math

  • Sports

    Highest paid athletes (includes salaries, bonuses, prize money, endorsements and appearance fees), 2000:Michael Schumacher, $59 million
    Highest paid athletes (includes salaries, bonuses, prize money, endorsements and appearance fees), 2010:Tiger Woods, $105 million

    Cost of a Super Bowl ad, 2000:$2.1 million
    Cost of a Super Bowl ad, 2011:$3 million

    Rose Bowl payout (amount paid to each participating team), 2000:$12 million
    Rose Bowl payout (amount paid to each participating team), 2011:$21.2 million

    Average cost of an NFL ticket, 2000:$45.63
    Average cost of an NFL ticket, 2011:$76.47

  • Entertainment and Lifestyle

    Average movie ticket price, 2001: $5.66
    Average movie ticket price, 2011: $7.95

    Golden Globe winner for best picture, 2001:"A Beautiful Mind"
    Golden Globe winner for best picture, 2011:"The Social Network"

    Number of wide-release 3-D movies, 2001: 1
    Number of wide-released 3-D movies, 2011:30+

    Oprah Winfrey net worth, 2001:$800 million
    Oprah Winfrey net worth, 2011:$2.7 billion

    Number of children in the Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar family, 2001: 13
    Number of children in the Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar family, 2011: 19

    Most-watched TV show, 2001-2002:"Friends," 24.46 million average
    Most-watched TV show, 2010:"American Idol," 29.8 million average

    Highest-paid TV actor, 2001:Kelsey Grammer, $1.6 million per episode
    Highest-paid TV actor, 2011:Charlie Sheen, $1.25 million per episode

    Number of reality shows in Nielsen top 10, 2001: 2
    Number of reality shows in Nielsen top 10, 2010: 5

    Top-earning concert act, 2001:U2, estimated ticket sales $109.7 million
    Top-earning concert act, 2010:Bon Jovi, estimated ticket sales $201.1 million

    Average concert ticket price, 2001:$43.86
    Average concert ticket price, 2010:$55

    Popularity rank of the names "Malia" and "Sasha," 2000:498, 476
    Popularity rank of the names "Malia" and "Sasha," 2009:192, 261

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