Armed with facts, Rachel Maddow completely obliterated the great Republican lie that President Obama has blown up the deficit.
After discussing the Jack Lew nomination, and Lew’s past success in the Clinton administration, Maddow said,
You would never know it from the way the deficit peacocks are crowing against this administration, but the deficit is now more that two hundred billion dollars smaller than it was when President Obama first took office. We are currently witnessing the fastest deficit reduction in this country since the end of World War II. That alleged big spending liberal, Barack Obama, has already signed into law $2.4 trillion in deficit reduction measures over the last decade. And that total could be even higher except that the deficit peacocks on the other side of the aisle in Congress keep balking at reduction ideas like cap and trade, and the Dream Act, and closing tax loopholes. All of which would reduce the debt and the deficit, and all of which are policies that Republicans used to like, until President Barack Obama said that he liked them too, then they turned against their own ideas.Even the dreaded Obamacare was one of the biggest debt reduction proposals considered in Washington since the Clinton era, and Republicans hate that with the heat of a thousand suns. So some talk the talk, and others walk the walk.
There is a school of thought that says that deficit reduction shouldn’t actually even be a national priority right now. As we slowly recover from the most brutal recession since the Great Depression, there is a strong case to be made that the government should just borrow away. The government should take advantage of how low interest rates are, should take advantage of a market in which the world is eager to loan us money right now. We could borrow like crazy right now, invest that money in job creation, and infrastructure, and economic growth. We could worry about debt reduction when we are fully back in our feet. If we took that strategy we would get fully back on our feet faster, and frankly in a more sustainable way, if we used that spending to invest in our economic strength.
But the political world is going to reject, if the political world is going to reject, or ignore that school of thought. If we are all going to be all wringing our hands all of the time, we should at least get our facts straight about who has been better for the deficit and who has been worse. No peacocks, no jerks, no whiners. Sounds good in English, but it’s going to sound even better when they put it in Latin on the back of a quarter.
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