Whose deficit?

January 15, 2010 at 11:29 am | Posted in Economy, Historical, politics straight up | Leave a comment
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Blowing away the surplus

Illus. in: Harper's weekly, v. 31, no. 1576. 1887 March 5. (Library of Congress)

A recent Fox poll asked the question, “Who do you think is more responsible for the current state of the economy — President Obama, former President Bush or Congress?”

Six percent held President Obama responsible, 36 percent blamed Bush, 30 percent blamed Congress, 20 percent said it was some combination of the three, and 8 percent didn’t know.

Some people would say it’s not fair to blame Congress, but I do think those individuals who were members during the Bush administration rightfully deserve a share of responsibility. They were the ones, after all, who put Bush’s policies into action. It is nice to see though that despite the media saturated with fingers pointed at the current president, a very small number were buying.

David Axelrod has an op-ed in the WSJ where he lays out in simple, concise language the current state of affairs and how we got here.

The day the Bush administration took over from President Bill Clinton in 2001, America enjoyed a $236 billion budget surplus — with a projected 10-year surplus of $5.6 trillion. When the Bush administration left office, it handed President Obama a $1.3 trillion deficit — and projected shortfalls of $8 trillion for the next decade. During eight years in office, the Bush administration passed two major tax cuts skewed to the wealthiest Americans, enacted a costly Medicare prescription-drug benefit and waged two wars, without paying for any of it.

How anyone can keep a straight face while pushing for a recommencing of the failed Republican policies that got us here is beyond me.

Thanks, Steve Benen!

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