When President Obama released his first budget to the nation in February of 2009, he spent his afternoon meeting with the liberals from the Congressional Black Caucus at the White House. On Wednesday, when he releases his fifth budget, he will privately dine instead with a dozen Republican Senators.

This change is not just a matter of the White House social calendar. While Obama’s first budget was hailed by progressives as a breath of fresh air, his latest is earning scorn from those same quarters for its plan to cut Social Security—a heresy among many of the President’s liberal base, who have long argued that Social Security is not a contributor to the debt.