Obama's flip flop on the debt ceiling

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Revmitchell, Sep 22, 2013.

  1. Revmitchell

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    Feb 18, 2006
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    “Mr. President, I rise today to talk about America’s debt problem. The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. government can’t pay its own bills.”

    Here, Obama is sounding a bit Tea Partyish.

    “It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our government’s reckless fiscal policies. Over the past five years, our federal debt has increased by $3.5 trillion to $8.6 trillion. That is ‘‘trillion’’ with a ‘‘T.’’ That is money that we have borrowed from the Social Security trust fund, borrowed from China and Japan, borrowed from American taxpayers.”

    Obama’s language is remarkably similar to charges made by the Mitt Romney campaign against Obama during the 2012 election, though Romney mostly focused on the debt held by China. (Japan was ignored.) When Obama took office in the midst of the Great Recession, the total national debt was $10.6 trillion; it is now $16.4 trillion.

    “And over the next five years, between now and 2011, the president’s budget will increase the debt by almost another $3.5 trillion.”

    It actually increased $5 trillion by the start of fiscal 2011.

    “Numbers that large are sometimes hard to understand. Some people may wonder why they matter. Here is why: This year, the federal government will spend $220 billion on interest. That is more money to pay interest on our national debt than we’ll spend on Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program.

    “That is more money to pay interest on our debt this year than we will spend on education, homeland security, transportation and veterans benefits combined. It is more money in one year than we are likely to spend to rebuild the devastated gulf coast in a way that honors the best of America. And the cost of our debt is one of the fastest growing expenses in the federal budget.”

    Despite the increase in the debt the past seven years, interest costs actually have dropped, to about $200 billion a year, because interest rates have fallen so much during the economic slowdown. But if interest rates go up again, interest expense will soar.

    “This rising debt is a hidden domestic enemy, robbing our cities and states of critical investments in infrastructure like bridges, ports and levees; robbing our families and our children of critical investments in education and health-care reform; robbing our seniors of the retirement and health security they have counted on.

    “Every dollar we pay in interest is a dollar that is not going to investment in America’s priorities. Instead, interest payments are a significant tax on all Americans — a debt tax that Washington doesn’t want to talk about. If Washington were serious about honest tax relief in this country, we would see an effort to reduce our national debt by returning to responsible fiscal policies.”

    “But we are not doing that. Despite repeated efforts by Senators Conrad and Feingold, the Senate continues to reject a return to the commonsense pay-go rules that used to apply. Previously, pay-go rules applied both to increases in mandatory spending and to tax cuts. The Senate had to abide by the commonsense budgeting principle of balancing expenses and revenues.

    “Unfortunately, the principle was abandoned, and now the demands of budget discipline apply only to spending. As a result, tax breaks have not been paid for by reductions in Federal spending, and thus the only way to pay for them has been to increase our deficit to historically high levels and borrow more and more money. Now we have to pay for those tax breaks plus the cost of borrowing for them. Instead of reducing the deficit, as some people claimed, the fiscal policies of this administration and its allies in Congress will add more than $600 million in debt for each of the next five years. That is why I will once again co-sponsor the pay-go amendment and continue to hope that my colleagues will return to a smart rule that has worked in the past and can work again.”

    #1 Revmitchell, Sep 22, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2013
  2. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    Apr 11, 2013
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    He spoke in such a manner because a Republican president, in 2006, was proposing the raising of the debt limit, at that time from $6.2 trillion to $7.8 trillion. That's nearly ten trillion dollars less than where the debt has risen to under the Great Pretender, who obviously claimed to feel differently about things in 2006

    Politifacts said in 2011 of his obvious flip-flop ...


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