From the Right



We continue to ignore the virus and the malignancy of our federal debt

Terence P. Jeffrey on

The word "unsustainable" is often used by politicians and bureaucrats in Washington, D.C., when they are talking about -- rather than acting on -- the federal debt.

Such was the case when then-acting Office of Management and Budget director Russell Vought appeared in the House Budget Committee on March 12, 2019, to talk about President Donald Trump's budget proposal for fiscal 2020.

"The national debt nearly doubled under the previous administration and is now more than $22 trillion," Vought said.

"This level of debt is unsustainable and threatens the prosperity and economic freedom of future generations," he warned.

"The president's commitment to fiscal responsibility has been outlined in previous budgets and again today he is requesting more reductions to both discretionary and mandatory spending than any other president in history," Vought said.

What happened?


Fiscal 2019 ended six-and-a-half months after the Office of Management and Budget director delivered this testimony about the president's plans for fiscal 2020. During fiscal 2019, it turned out, the federal government spent $4,446,584,000,000.

Even when the historical spending numbers were adjusted for inflation, that was the most the federal government had ever spent in any fiscal year.

When fiscal 2019 started on Oct. 1, 2018, the federal debt stood at $21,516,058,183,180.23. When it ended on Sept. 30, 2019, it stood at $22,719,401,753,433.78.

In one year -- when the White House Office of Management and Budget was saying the debt was already "unsustainable" -- the federal debt climbed more than $1.2 trillion.


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