Increasing numbers of voters point to the growing federal deficits as a major issue for deciding their votes come November, 2010. If those voters took a look at which of the two major parties is responsible for the current deficit situation, they would not vote for any Republican, anywhere. After all, it was Karl Rove and Dick Cheney who said; “Deficits don’t matter” (and see here).
But, for those which find themselves concerned over ever growing budget deficits and see them as a threat to the financial security of America at large and their children and grandchildren in particular, deficits do matter. And it’s Republican Presidents who were in charge during the creation of most of the current deficit.
Since Richard Nixon, the tax cut and spend policies of successive Republican Presidents has accounted for the vast majority of the US outstanding national debt. The total percentage of US National Debt accrued under Republican Presidents Reagan, Bush I and Bush II is over 73.2 % of the amount which has been incurred since the beginning of the United States.
Ronald Reagan won the Presidential election in 1980 by claiming that the national debt was at an “all time high of $1 trillion.” Imagine that! In 1980, the entire national debt was at only $1 trillion! Now the national debt is $13.64 trillion and climbing each second.
Bill Clinton added deficits totaling some $1.6 trillion. If we add up all the national debt prior to 1980 plus Bill Clinton’s $1.6 trillion, we get $2.6 trillion. If we include $1.3 trillion arguably attributable (which since the federal fiscal year of 2009 began on October 1, 2008 before Mr. Obama was even elected but, let’s be generous to our tax cut and spend Republican friends!) to the Obama administration, all of those add up to a total of $3.9 trillion. That leaves $10.74 trillion to Presidents Reagan, Bush I and Bush II. Since 1980, when Ronald Reagan was elected president, Republican presidents have accounted for a total of 73.2% of the national debt of our nation since it began in 1779. Presidents Reagan, Bush I and Bush II saw the national debt increase 1000% under their fiscal care.
Now some conservatives will argue that it was the Congress and the Democrats that ran up the deficits but this isn’t true. The same folks which gave us the raw numbers of the deficits also ran an analysis of the spending by the respective Congresses (a majority of which were either Republican or dominated by Republicans and so called “Blue Dog Democrats”-which in my opinion are really Republicans) and debunked this myth!
Consider this long consistent history when you next hear Republicans claiming that they are fiscal conservatives.