Thursday, August 2, 2012

The National Debt Crisis


Republicans blame Obama for increasing the National Debt.

Liberal Answer

How much has Obama increased the Debt compared to Bush?

Bush $6.1 trillion
Obama $3.9 trillion

The events and policies that have pushed deficits to these high levels in the near term, however, were largely outside the new Administration’s control. If not for the tax cuts enacted during the presidency of George W. Bush that Congress did not pay for, the cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that were initiated during that period, and the effects of the worst economic slump since the Great Depression (including the cost of steps necessary to combat it), we would not be facing these huge deficits in the near term.

Republicans try to blame Obama for increasing the National Debt, even though it's only gone up 25% since he was in office, and it went up 75% under Bush, with Republican support. They also fail to mention that 95% of Obama's budget deficit is carryover spending from the Bush Administration's policies.

If you look at state and local taxes, the working poor actually pay a higher percentage of their income in these taxes in every state except for Vermont. In “Alabama, for example, low-income families (which make less than $13,000) pay 11 percent of their income in state and local taxes, while those making more than $229,000 pay just 4 percent.” Rather than taking aim at some of the poorest members of our society — 62 percent of whom have incomes under $20,000 — Americans should be asking how we can get the super-wealthy to pay tax rates closer to their modern historical average and how we can lift up the incomes of those who are too impoverished to be asked to pay federal income taxes.

Sixty percent of the deficit is due to the Bush tax cuts

Assuming the Bush tax cuts continue through 2019, CBPP estimates that the Bush tax cuts plus associated debt-service costs for those tax cuts would make up 55.6 percent of the deficit in 2019. that's close to Dean's 60 percent claim. Over the 2009-2019 period, CBPP estimates the tax cuts would cost $3.7 trillion plus $1.7 trillion in debt-service costs for a total of $5.4 trillion. That would be 43 percent of CBPP's estimated cumulative deficit for the decade of $12.6 trillion.

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