Great piece by Rex Nutting on the myth of a spending explosion under Obama:
Of all the falsehoods told about President Barack Obama, the biggest whopper is the one about his reckless spending spree.
As would-be president Mitt Romney tells it: “I will lead us out of this debt and spending inferno.”
Almost everyone believes that Obama has presided over a massive increase in federal spending, an “inferno” of spending that threatens our jobs, our businesses and our children’s future. Even Democrats seem to think it’s true.
Government spending under Obama, including his signature stimulus bill, is rising at a 1.4% annualized pace — slower than at any time in nearly 60 years.
But it didn’t happen. Although there was a big stimulus bill under Obama, federal spending is rising at the slowest pace since Dwight Eisenhower brought the Korean War to an end in the 1950s.
Even hapless Herbert Hoover managed to increase spending more than Obama has.
Here are the facts, according to the official government statistics:
• In the 2009 fiscal year — the last of George W. Bush’s presidency — federal spending rose by 17.9% from $2.98 trillion to $3.52 trillion. Check the official numbers at the Office of Management and Budget.
• In fiscal 2010 — the first budget under Obama — spending fell 1.8% to $3.46 trillion.
• In fiscal 2011, spending rose 4.3% to $3.60 trillion.
• In fiscal 2012, spending is set to rise 0.7% to $3.63 trillion, according to the Congressional Budget Office’s estimate of the budget that was agreed to last August.
• Finally in fiscal 2013 — the final budget of Obama’s term — spending is scheduled to fall 1.3% to $3.58 trillion. Read the CBO’s latest budget outlook.
The big surge in federal spending happened in fiscal 2009, before Obama took office. Since then, spending growth has been relatively flat.
Over Obama’s four budget years, federal spending is on track to rise from $3.52 trillion to $3.58 trillion, an annualized increase of just 0.4%.
There has been no huge increase in spending under the current president, despite what you hear.
You’d think that would be the end of it. But not when you have outrageous hacks like James Pethokoukis on the case. You all remember him, right? He’s the clown who, in AUGUST OF 2008, was denying that we were in a recession. He then, a few months later in October 2008, was forced to admit we were in recession (since the economy had crashed and the DOW had dropped 5,000 point), decided that the reason the economy tanked and the DOW dropped was because investors were afraid that Obama was leading in the polls, otherwise known as the Goldberg theorem. He later theorized that Obama’s interaction with Joe the Plumber would cost Obama the election. His crimes against reality and reason are so severe that we’ve almost had to dedicate an entire server to document the atrocities, but yet, for some reason, he is still held in some regard in some
At any rate, here is Pethokoukis “refudiating” Rex:
Until Barack Obama took office in 2009, the United States had never spent more than 23.5% of GDP, with the exception of the World War II years of 1942-1946. Here’s the Obama spending record:
– 25.2% of GDP in 2009
– 24.1% of GDP in 2010
– 24.1% of GDP in 2011
– 24.3% (estimates by the White House ) in 2012
What’s more, if Obama wins another term, spending—according to his own budget—would never drop below 22.3% of GDP. If that forecast is right, spending during Obama’s eight years in office would average 23.6% of GDP. That’s higher than any single previous non-war year.
That’s a neat little trick he’s done there, so obvious that his commenters are once again openly mocking him:
Does ANYONE here recognize the economy contracted in 2008? Is everyone here a partisan hack who measures spending at % of GDP, but ignores revenue as % of GDP, which is what causes the deficit. Is anyone here cognizant of the fact that spending goes up during a recession because of unemployment, aid to the States, and food stamps increases?
Do any of you live in the real world?
James, didn’t something happen in 2008 that caused the GDP to contract rather violently, thereby rendering the stat of spending as a % of GDP to be somewhat nonsensical?