Obama and the Deficit

During this election cycle, much has been made of Obama and the Democrats fiscal irresponsibility when it comes to the budget and deficit. However, when you look at recent data it is apparent that the numbers don’t necessarily agree and the pot seems to be calling the kettle black.

— National debt increase during Republican administrations since 1980: Reagan, 189%; George H. W. Bush, 54%; George W. Bush, 86%.

— National debt increase during Democratic administrations: Clinton, 37%. Obama (as of September 30, 2012), 51%.

Perhaps the first year of each administration’s debt increase should be attributed to the prior administration, after all the budget for a new Presidents first year is passed by the previous administration. If so, then Republicans as a whole performed even worse compared to Democrats.

— Republicans: Mr. Reagan 186%, George H.W. Bush 72%, George W. Bush 107%.

— Democrats: Mr. Clinton 31% and Mr. Obama 31% so far.

Under the latter scenario — attributing each president’s first year of deficits to the prior administration — Republican administrations since 1981 have racked up $9.8 trillion in debt — 89% more debt than the $5.2 trillion racked up by Democrats. And the Republicans’ record would probably be even worse if their deficits were adjusted for inflation.

You can verify these fiures at the Treasury Department’s web site,http://www.treasurydirect.gov/govt/reports/pd/mspd/mspd.htm.

With a track record like that, how can Republicans accuse Democrats of fiscal irresponsibility?

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