Wally Wonders Why

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Bush Deficit vs. Obama Deficit

wapoobamabudget1I’m not really into reposting other’s material, but I’ll make this article from the Heritage Foundation one of the few exceptions.   As per their usual, they have with great visual simplicity, painted a picture of outrageous spending habits of the the Obama Administration.

No, they don’t let President Bush off the hook, for his poor spending, they just clearly show how much worse things became after President Obama was elected.  It’s no wonder that people are taking to the streets in protest.

And after you check out the outrageous spending plan, don’t miss the penny explanation of President Obama’s budget cuts?

Bush Deficit vs. Obama Deficit in Pictures

President Barack Obama has repeatedly claimed that his budget would cut the deficit by half by the end of his term. But as Heritage analyst Brian Riedl has pointed out, given that Obama has already helped quadruple the deficit with his stimulus package, pledging to halve it by 2013 is hardly ambitious. The Washington Post has a great graphic which helps put President Obama’s budget deficits in context of President Bush’s.

What’s driving Obama’s unprecedented massive deficits? Spending. Riedl details:

  • President Bush expanded the federal budget by a historic $700 billion through 2008. President Obama would add another $1 trillion.
  • President Bush began a string of expensive finan­cial bailouts. President Obama is accelerating that course.
  • President Bush created a Medicare drug entitle­ment that will cost an estimated $800 billion in its first decade. President Obama has proposed a $634 billion down payment on a new govern­ment health care fund.
  • President Bush increased federal education spending 58 percent faster than inflation. Presi­dent Obama would double it.
  • President Bush became the first President to spend 3 percent of GDP on federal antipoverty programs. President Obama has already in­creased this spending by 20 percent.
  • President Bush tilted the income tax burden more toward upper-income taxpayers. President Obama would continue that trend.
  • President Bush presided over a $2.5 trillion increase in the public debt through 2008. Setting aside 2009 (for which Presidents Bush and Obama share responsibility for an additional $2.6 trillion in public debt), President Obama’s budget would add $4.9 trillion in public debt from the beginning of 2010 through 2016.

UPDATE: Many Obama defenders in the comments are claiming that the numbers above do not include spending on Iraq and Afghanistan during the Bush years. They most certainly do. While Bush did fund the wars through emergency supplementals (not the regular budget process), that spending did not simply vanish. It is included in the numbers above. Also, some Obama defenders are claiming the graphic above represents biased Heritage Foundation numbers. While we stand behind the numbers we put out 100%, the numbers, and the graphic itself, above are from the Washington Post. We originally left out the link to WaPo. It has been now been added.

CLARIFICATION: Of course, this Washington Post graphic does not perfectly delineate budget surpluses and deficits by administration. President Bush took office in January 2001, and therefore played a lead role in crafting the FY 2002-2008 budgets. Presidents Bush and Obama share responsibility for the FY 2009 budget deficit that overlaps their administrations, before President Obama assumes full budgetary responsibility beginning in FY 2010. Overall, President Obama’s budget would add twice as much debt as President Bush over the same number of years.


12 Comments

  1. wally, you’re either a moron or, just like most, if not all, the republicans in congress (and i was a republican 1.5 years ago!), you are a liar. i am sick to death of you and the many many other liars on capitol hill. NY TImes: bush and cronies gave families earning over $1 MILLION per year MUCH larger tax-RATE reductions than any other group in the country, I.E. IN 2004 TO 19.6% from 24.2% in 2000. that is $58,000 PER YEAR PER AVERAGE FAMILY INCOME over $1 million, which happens to be $14,000 per year MORE than the average US employed-worker makes per year. what BS you spout. everything else about who caused the deficit is crap and biased, also, although you did seem to throw in a couple actual facts, which is surprising. more than anything else, those tax cuts caused the deficit, but of course, bush and cheney wanted iraq’s oil and cheney, of course, still on the haliburton payroll as vice president, wanted his company to make trillions off of us poor idiots who didn’t know who he and bush were. bush had a surplus in the budget when he took office, idiot! how one president could ACCIDENTALLY turn that into the massive budget (the largest portion of which he never disclosed publicly — the war money, and did NOT include in his “budget” that) doesn’t logically make sense. he had to TRY to ruin this country and he and that scum cheney should both be hung for treason and war crimes, and you with them!

  2. As usual this is just GOP regurgitation of Hitler-esque misinformation and propaganda. First of all the Heritage Foundation is one of the most ultra-conservative think tanks out there. On this alone, the credibility and objectiveness of this “study” is thrown out the window. Second, they try to compare “Actual” Bush spending to “Obaas” projected. Any basic researcher will tell you that that is useless, it’s comapring apples to oranges. Therefore the validity of this study is invalid. It is just another attempt by the hatefilled right wingnuts to discredit ap resident thaat doesn’t share their same extremist views.

  3. I know that neoCONS hate facts but here is a few to make your head spin…

    The stimulus package that Obama put into play was for a total of $787 Billion. Not a Trillion. Has it been money spent? In a word, no…

    $288 Billion dollars were dedicated for “Tax Credits” to induce folks to make America more energy efficient etc…
    Using figures from the 15th of this January, $92.8 Billion in TAX CREDITS have been used. This is not spending, this is tax credit…

    There we have $92.8 Billion of $787 Billion dedicated to stimulus.

    $275 Billion were dedicated for “Contracts, Grants, and Loans” for things like rebuilding America’s infrastructure. $71.5 Billion have been used thus far.

    Let’s see, $92.8 Billion plus $71.5 Billion equals $164.3 Billion.

    $224 Billion were dedicated for the misleading, yet popular among the GOP, term of “Entitlements” which are actually things like unemployment and emergency healthcare for the newly unemployed.

    Unemployment payments go directly back into the economy and have ripple effects far beyond their cost. The unemployed person spends the money at the grocery store which employs people, and sells goods which are shipped and produced by still other people, all of whom benefit and keep jobs, and then go and spend the money they’ve earned… $100.6 Billion have been used so far in this regard.

    Now, $92.8 Billion plus $71.5 Billion plus $100.6 Billion equals $264.9 Billion of $787 Billion dedicated… Hardly “Trillions”.

    But wait! There’s more! $296.4 Billion—Federal spending from the financial crisis bailout fund before Jan. 20, 2009. The infamous TARP funds… Before Obama took office…

    Then $173 Billion—Federal spending from the financial crisis bailout fund after Jan. 20, 2009. The actual time Obama has been in office, but let’s include it all.

    $92.8 Billion plus $71.5 Billion plus $100.6 Billion plus $296 Billion plus $173 Billion equals $734.3 Billion used so far. Not “Trillions”, but $734 Billion…

    Then take into account the some $165 Billion of bailout funds repaid by banks and automakers.

    Final total? $569.3 Billion, not “Trillions”…

    1. I’ve been conservative for a good portion of my life and rarely do I run into the almost mythical “hatefilled right wingnut” nor conservative who would be considered “extremist.”

      Any researcher may find that comparing actual spending versus projected spending to be useless, but most people just call it budgeting. If the Obama Administration hasn’t spent all the money yet that they have projected, it doesn’t mean that we won’t be on the hook for new programs and it doesn’t mean that they aren’t planning on spending more.

      Anyone who can google “President Obama acknowledges record spending” can find many sources other than the Heritage Foundation. These are from an AP story.

      The result is a budget plan that would give the country trillion-dollar-plus deficits for three consecutive years. Obama’s new budget projects a spending increase of 5.7 percent for the current budget year and forecasts that spending would rise another 3 percent in 2011 to $3.83 trillion.

      The deficit for this year would surge to a record-breaking $1.56 trillion, topping last year’s then-unprecedented $1.41 trillion gap, a number which had dwarfed the previous record of $454.8 billion set in 2008 under former President George W. Bush.

    1. This is not a comparison of the Bush Administration budget vs. the Obama Administration budget.

      This is a comparison of actual spending, including the war, during the Bush Administration vs. the projected spending of the Obama Administration.

      Most people understand that the Bush Administration spent unprecedented amounts of our money. President Obama’s budget shows that he intends to blow away all previous records for spending.

  4. So…. let’s see here.. Obama puts the cost of the war back on budget (BushCo had this ‘off budget’). Clueless factor #1
    Bush tax cuts (both of them) were fiscally irresponsible given the budget commitments and non-discretionary obligations – Clueless factor #2

    Am I missing something here, reactionary boys and girls?

    Solution, get out of Iraq. Restate the Bush years with the cost of the wars, and reinstate the Clinton tax codes.

  5. the best way to measure debt is as a percentage of GDP. yes, that graph looks bad, but it’s not adjusted for inflation:
    http://tinyurl.com/32as88l

    so obama is ramping up deficit spending, but to a level of only 1/3 – 1/2 of what the US has held in the past. we do need to bring down government spending, but the Obama administration’s philosophy is to first bring the economy back to health first:

    Jobs: http://tinyurl.com/yhb3dq2
    GDP: http://tinyurl.com/368vpgn
    Stocks: http://tinyurl.com/34ce3by

  6. If you want to stimulate the economy, you give people who invest more money. Period. Giving an extra 200 bucks to Joe Blow who makes 20K a year does absolutely squat for the economy. Give someone who makes 1 mil a year an extra 1%…someone who knows how to make money work for them…and see a profound effect on the economy.

    And newsflash: Obama is nothing new. His policies and spending are a near match for the moronic policies in the 70′s of Jimmy Carter. During Carter’s administration we saw the tax burden on the wealthiest Americans drop like a stone, while the burden on the poorest skyrocketed. The same is beginning to happen now. If you raise taxes on the rich, their total tax burden drops. ALWAYS. And the poorest Americans and the middle class tax burden increases to take up the slack.

    But dont take my word for it, check the Treasury department numbers.

    1. Gotta agree with you there, Mike. It reminds me of the stimulus checks that came out a few years ago. Where’s the stimulus?? You give a guy who only makes 20-30k/yr a check for a couple grand, what do you think he’s going to do with it? Investments? Come on, he’s going to spend it on beer. Someone who makes 1mil/yr obviously understands money and knows what to do with money. Not popular, I know, but it’s truth.

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