On Tuesday, the Congressional Budget Office released a report discussing the economy and budget. Much of the noise you may have heard today was from Republicans erroneously reading the report to declare that Obamacare will kill over 2 million jobs in the coming years. Sarah Jones already tore apart that claim earlier today. However, another thing that the report showed, and something that many Republicans continue to deny is happening, is that the national deficit continues to shrink.
In their report, the CBO estimated that this year’s deficit will be $514 billion, which is approximately one-third of the size of the deficit in President Obama’s first year in office. They estimate that the deficit will shrink even more in 2015, falling to under $500 billion and representing only 2.8% of the GDP. After that, they do estimate the deficit to slowly increase over the years, but still be less than or right at about 4% of the GDP, as revenues will continue to increase, but there will also be an increase in spending due to more people heading into retirement.
As often as possible, it should be pointed out that President Obama inherited a hemorrhaging economy and a national deficit in his first year of $1.4 trillion. During his watch, he has cut the unemployment rate from a high of 10.0% in 2009 to the current rate of 6.7%. As it stands, he has cut the deficit by nearly a trillion dollars, and the national debt is stabilizing for the first time in a while. The housing market has rebounded and for the first time in seemingly forever, manufacturing jobs are increasing.
This isn’t to say that the economy is robust and that we should be satisfied with a still high unemployment rate or stagnant wages. The President has already made tackling income inequality a large part of his second term agenda. Also, increasing public-sector, government jobs could easily bring the unemployment rate down even further. Yet, there has still been quite a bit of progress made by President Obama, regardless of anything his critics have to say.
To see how prominent Republicans reacted to the CBO report, one need look no further than Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX.) On Tuesday afternoon, the only thing he could focus on was Obamacare, and how it will somehow add a trillion dollars to projected deficits.
Obamacare will contribute “to a $1 trillion increase in projected deficits” – CBO #FullRepeal
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) February 4, 2014
As with all things Ted Cruz, this is mostly BS, as he found a number in the report and decided to blame it on Obamacare. The CBO stated that they have raised the cumulative estimated deficit total by $1.0 trillion due to recently passed legislation and new information about spending and tax collection. The ACA is not recently passed legislation. It was passed in 2010 and the CBO has continued to factor in the passed legislation in their budget reports. Cruz knows this, but it doesn’t stop him from lying.
Justin Baragona is the Managing Editor at Politicus Sports as well as Senior Editor at PoliticusUSA. He was a political writer for 411Mania.com before joining PoliticusUSA. Politically, Justin considers himself a liberal but also a realist and pragmatist. Currently, Justin lives in St. Louis, MO and is married. Besides writing, he also runs his own business after spending a number of years in the corporate world. You can follow Justin on Twitter either with his personal handle (@justinbaragona) or the Sports site’s (@PoliticusSports).