After a few months of relative peace on the budget front, Democrats and Republicans are readying for a party-defining, election-year fight over trillion dollar-plus deficits and what to do about them.
The House Budget Committee chairman, Rep. Paul Ryan, is coming out next week with a sequel to last year's "Path to Prosperity" manifesto that ignited a firestorm over Medicare.
The upcoming debate gives Republicans a chance to show how they would tackle out-of-control budget deficits and rein in the cost and scope of government.
President Barack Obama played it safe when he released his spending blueprint last month for the budget year that begins Oct. 1. It calls for tax increases on wealthier earners and modest spending curbs, but doesn't address the spiraling costs of Medicare and Medicaid.