Obama said his administration will act decisively to face the present challenges. 

"To kick these problems down the road for another four years or another eight years would be to continue the same irresponsibility that led us to this point," Obama said.

"That's not why I ran for this office. I didn't come here to pass on our problems to the next president or the next generation."

'Constructive' criticism

Obama also urged congressional leaders to offer constructive alternative solutions to any objections they have to his budget.

"'Just say no' is the right advice to give your teenagers about drugs. It is not an acceptable response to what ever economic policy is proposed by the other parties."

Republicans have argued that Obama's budget, aimed at lifting the US economy out of the financial crisis, is too costly.

Some of Obama's fellow Democrats have also voiced concern over provisions on farm subsidies, tax deductions and industrial emissions.

Obama's proposed budget also includes plans to expand healthcare, upgrade education and combat climate change.

"The American people sent us here to get things done," Obama said. "Let's pass a budget that puts this nation on the road to lasting prosperity."