Tag Archives: Congressional Budget Office

POTUS takes credit he doesn’t deserve

Flash! National debt drops a tad, while the president of the United States takes credit for it!

Hold on for just a New York minute, shall we?

Donald J. Trump shouldn’t be taking credit for a slight dip in the national debt, any more than Barack Obama should have taken the hickey for it when it blipped up in the first month of his administration.

However, do not expect that to inhibit the new president from taking credit on such matters.

The president has shown this habit of taking credit for positive things but then passing off negative elements as if he’s some sort of innocent bystander.

The New York Times reported: “The federal debt is determined by the government’s decisions about taxing and spending, and by the strength of the American economy. The debt was increasing rapidly in early 2009 because the economy was in free fall, and because of policy decisions made during the administration of President George W. Bush.

“The debt is rising more slowly now because economic growth has strengthened and because of policy decisions made during Mr. Obama’s administration. But the debt is on a clear upward trend. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated in January that the debt would increase by $559 billion in the current fiscal year, ending in September.”

Trump has been in office for a whole month. He’s got 47 more of them to go. The president, though, is so darn quick with his Twitter trigger finger that he cannot help but assume this minor downtick in the debt is all his doing.

We’d better get used to this kind of thing.

Oh, the fact-checkers will be busy.

ACA costs reduced? Maybe

The Affordable Care Act will cost the federal government less money than originally thought.

Good news, yes? Maybe.


The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office has reduced the estimated cost of the ACA to the government, which ought to bring cheer to those of us who support the ACA in principle. It also ought to be grim news to those who hate the law they refer to derisively as Obamacare.

I plan to wait to hear what the ACA haters have to say before I take this bit of news to the bank.

The 2014 costs were reduced by about $5 billion from the estimated $41 billion projected initially, according to the CBO. Longer-term costs, to 2024, have been cut by $104 billion, says the CBO.

I’ll conceded that $104 billion over the course of the next decade isn’t a lot of money in the grand scheme of things as it relates to the federal budget. It’s tough to call 104 bil mere “chump change,” but it kinda/sorta is, if you get my drift.

It’s still less money out of the public coffer, which ought to cheer the skeptics — given that CBO reports usually toe the non-partisan line.

No one should expect anyone who’s disposed to detest the law to cheer anything that resembles positive news relating to the ACA.

I’ll be waiting to hear how both sides spin this bit of information.

Hey y’all, the deficit is shrinking

I consider myself a deficit hawk. I dislike as much as anyone the idea that the government spends more money than it receives.

It is with that stipulation that I hail news that the federal budget deficit is shrinking. Dramatically, I should add.


The Congressional Budget Office — which is about as nonpartisan and unbiased as it gets — pegs the 2013 federal deficit to be at $670 billion. That’s still a lot of money to be in the hole. It’s also about half of what the annual deficit totaled when President Obama took office in January 2009.

The cause for the shrinkage? More revenue created by more taxes being paid by more Americans getting back to work.

Interesting, don’t you think?

Yet the critics keeping yammering about the president’s “failed economic policies.”

Another report out this week shows that immigration reform would help grow the economy significantly over the next two decades, thus putting downward pressure on the deficit. How does that happen? By allowing undocumented immigrants to come out of the shadows and work in the open while they set out on that vaunted “path to citizenship.”

Another “failure”? I think not.