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Budget Woes
The Chickens Come Home to Roost

Some grim news about the U.S. deficit, via Fix the Debt:

New projections from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) show the national debt and deficits rising rapidly, with debt rising by over $10 trillion over the next decade and deficits growing from $439 billion last year to $544 billion this year, and to $1.37 trillion by 2026. This represents a significant deterioration from previous projections.

“This report makes it abundantly clear that the era of declining deficits is over,” said Maya MacGuineas, head of the Campaign to Fix the Deb [. . .]

According to CBO, the national debt will rise from $13.1 trillion, or 74 percent of GDP last year, to $23.8 trillion, or 86 percent by 2026. This is significantly worse than CBO’s projections in August, which showed debt rising to 77 percent of GDP by 2025. In total, debt in 2025 will be $1.4 trillion higher than had been previously projected.

Interest rates were already raised in December, and if they continue rising, this is going to be an even bigger issue.

But, either way, the reality at play here—that we are facing rising deficits after a long period of sustained, if tepid, economic growth—points to just how irresponsibly the federal budget has been managed. Both President Bush and President Obama added enormously and unwisely to the country’s deficit and debt, and the consequences of these errors will haunt us for years to come.

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