WASHINGTON — Former President Bill Clinton said Tuesday that broad tax cuts that expire in January should be temporarily renewed, including for the wealthiest Americans, to give lawmakers time to reach a deal on a longer-term extension that should exclude the rich.

Clinton’s comments were in contrast to President Obama, whose re-election he is supporting. Obama has opposed renewing the tax reductions for people earning over $250,000 a year.

Reductions in levies enacted under President George W. Bush expire in January, at the same time that $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts begin. The Congressional Budget Office and others have warned that letting both events occur would suck so much money out of the economy that it could spark a new recession.