Wyoming Senator Enzi Calls for Fiscal Restraint
Wyoming Senator Mike Enzi issued a statement today on the Federal Debt and it's long term consequences. Here is the press release followed by some figures and context...
WASHINGTON, DC – During a hearing on the nation’s debt today, U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, noted that America’s current debt is the biggest our country has ever owed and endangers our government and hurts the nation’s economic potential.
“If we don’t stand up to our debt and stop overspending, we’ll ruin what so many generations before us have worked to build as well as the hopes of the generations to come,” said Chairman Enzi. “Unfortunately, the president’s budget plan just makes matters worse. Over the next ten years, every man, woman, and child will owe $75,610.”
According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), just 15 years ago the debt held by the public was one-third the size of our economy. Today, the accelerating debt is 74 percent of our economy and in 2028, it will be the same size as our economy. In just two short generations, by 2050, the nation’s debt will be more than twice the size and grow three times faster than the economy over the next 35 years. After 2050, the CBO reports that debt will be greater than 250 percent of the GDP.
“Rapidly growing debt will press down on the dreams and opportunities of future generations throughout their lives. It is time for Congress and the president to tackle the nation’s chronic overspending with honesty and accountability before it is too late,” Enzi said.
DEBT AND DEFICIT FACTS: It should be noted that indeed, the US Debt, that is the accumulated debt for the country since it's founding until now, doubled between the year 2000 and 2009 (the last Bush Administration budget). It has gone up another 70% since President Obama took office to just over 17-trillion dollars.
To put that in some context though, we have seen in that time, America's longest wars, and the worst recession since the 1930'S, and recessions cut tax revenues, no matter who is in office.
And while the annual deficit of 2009 was 9.8% of our national Gross Domestic Product, the latest is down to 3.2% of GDP and falling. For comparison, the annual deficits of WW I were 17% of GDP and WW II were 24%. During the Great Depression, FDR's deficits were 5% of GDP.
The National Debt was essentially in decline from World War II until 1980, when it began to increase again. Only in 1998-2000 did it decline once more.
If national budgets had been balanced from 1980 until now, the total national debt would be around 4-trillion dollars, not over 17-trillion.