Sunday, August 5, 2012

The Myth of the Clinton Surpluses

When you speak to a liberal, eventually the topic comes up that George W. Bush inherited a surplus from Bill Clinton and squandered it by his reckless spending. Not saying that Bush was overly prudent in his handling of the economy during his two terms, but the fallacy is that he inherited a budget surplus from Clinton, it is not true. Here are the facts as reported by the U.S. Treasury Department.

The National Debt and the Deficit during the years of Bill Clinton’s Presidency were as follows: Clinton was sworn in Jan., 2003, his first fiscal Budget was begun on 9/30/93.

                         Budget            Nat’l Debt            Deficit (in billions)

1993 -             Clinton’s 1st
                       (as of 9/30/93)      $4.4 trillion

1994 -        “       2nd    “                  $4.6    “               $281 (b)

1995  -       “       3rd    “                   $4.9   “               $281 (b)

  1996  -       “       4th    “                   $5.2   “               $250 (b)

  1997  -       “       5th    “                   $5.4   “               $188 (b)

  1998  -       “       6th    “                   $5.5   “                $113 (b)

  1999  -       “       7th    “                   $5.65 “               $130 (b)

  2000  -       “       8th    “                   $5.67                 $17.9  (b)

2001  -  As of 9/30/01                     $5.8   trillion       $133 (b)

So as you can see, not once during the Clinton Presidency did the Clinton Administration have a surplus, it came close but no cigar (no pun intended). You must also remember that the Republicans took control of the House and Senate in 1995, and prodded Clinton into reining in government spending and by having him sign Welfare Reform legislation and by reducing the Capital Gains tax, which brought into the treasury extra revenue which helped in lowering the deficit, and we were in relative peace, during those years, no wars to speak of.

All the Presidents, since Lyndon Johnson, have used the surplus in the Social Security receipts to help lower the deficit.

So it is not true that George W. Bush inherited a surplus from the Clinton administration. In fact, When Bush took office in 2001, during the first year, we were in recession (which began in the summer of 2000), and we had the catastrophe of 9/11. Also, Bush got his tax cuts implemented in 2002 and 2003 which brought in extra revenue to the treasury. From 2003 to 2007 the deficit went down each year until 2008 when the financial markets collapsed and the deficit ballooned to approx. $450 billion, the last of the Bush budgets. When Bush left office, after 8 years, our National Debt stood at $9.7 trillion (bad, but nowhere near the numbers that Obama has rung up since he was sworn in).

Compare this to the debt and the deficits of the Obama Administration, whereby our debt has reached $16 trillion, which is about 100% of our GDP (and rising), and we have averaged $1.3 trillion deficits each year since Obama took office, with no curtailment in sight. Most of that debt is covered from borrowing money from other countries and others.

Instead of cutting back, President Obama is talking about borrowing even more money for another “Stimulus”, even though the two previous one’s failed to produce jobs or to bring about fiscal balance or responsibility. If we continue on this path, we will become another Greece or Spain, the path of fiscal ruin.

Don’t you think we need “change we can believe in”? Only an idiot would say “NO”.

Conservative commentary by Chuck Lehmann


Gene Elliott said...

Can you believe our "Liar in Chief" is now using the Clinton years as a reason to justify his failed programs? At least Clinton worked with the Republicans to reduce the Capital Gains Tax, but Obama does just the opposite.

Teenagers Insurance said...

Clinton is a hero to Democrats. Is it because he is a misogynist? Is it because he gave Obama bin Laden a pass? Or because he helped the Community Re-Investment Act grow and destroy our housing market? Or is it because he lied under oath?