US Debt to Hit $16 Trillion on Tuesday as DNC Begins

Monday, 03 Sep 2012 01:06 PM

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Just as Democrats are gaveling in their convention Tuesday, the federal government likely will announce another dubious milestone — $16 trillion in total federal debt.

In an election already focused on domestic issues of jobs, spending and deficits, the $16 trillion number is likely to underscore just how much is at stake in November for both parties, which are offering dramatically different ways to begin to eat away at the deep hole.

Gross federal debt has been flirting with $16 trillion for the past two weeks, and the government ended Thursday $15.991 trillion in debt.

Editor's Note: Will Obama Be Defeated? Vote Here!

With several debt auctions scheduled for the end of last week, budget analysts think the government probably broached the $16 trillion number on Friday, and it will be reported to the public Tuesday, which, thanks to the Labor Day holiday, is the next business day.

While $16 trillion isn’t a tipping point, it is a stark number that Republicans said will reflect poorly on Mr. Obama, who has overseen the biggest debt explosion in the country’s history.

“This is a grim landmark for the United States,” said Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, the ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee. “Yet the president seems strangely unconcerned.”

The Obama campaign didn’t respond to a message seeking comment on the milestone, but, speaking on “Fox News Sunday,”David Axelrod, a top adviser to Mr. Obama, said the president has a “plausible plan” to stabilize the debt, but acknowledged the plan doesn’t actually begin to reduce it.

“You can’t balance the budget in the short term because to do that would be to ratchet down the economy,” he said.

That underscores both sides’ dilemma: Republicans object to tax increases, saying they will stunt a recovery, while Democrats say reducing spending would likewise hurt.

The Congressional Budget Office last month said raising taxes or cutting spending, or both, might indeed send the economy into a recession, though the alternative — putting off fiscal tightening — means things are worse in the long term.

Republicans believe the debt can be used against Mr. Obama. At their convention last week in Tampa, Fla., they posted a giant electronic board that steadily ticked off the debt they said accumulated every moment from the time they gaveled into session Monday afternoon until they ended the convention late Thursday.

But debt jumps — and occasionally falls — in much more sporadic fashion, as bonds are regularly being auctioned off and sold back.

The biggest one-day boost in history came on Aug. 2, 2011, just after Congress and the president agreed to raise the debt limit, unleashing months of pent-up borrowing.

Editor's Note: Will Obama Be Defeated? Vote Here!

Democrats argue that neither side has clean hands — though debt grew less under President Clinton than either Mr. Obama or President George W. Bush.

Gross debt stood at $4.188 trillion when Mr. Clinton took office in 1993 and grew to $5.728 trillion when he turned the White House over to Mr. Bush, who added $4.899 trillion in his eight years in office, to reach $10.627 trillion on Jan. 20, 2009, when Mr. Obama took over. The country has already notched another $5.364 trillion during his term.



© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Report: NKorea Sent Commandos to Attack US Nuclear Plants in 1990s

Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 23:34 PM

Five covert commando teams were sent to the United States by North Korea in the 1990s to attack nuclear power plants and . . .

Poynter Gives Rolling Stone Rape Story 'Error of the Year' Award

Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 23:25 PM

The Poynter Institute has tagged Rolling Stone's article about an alleged rape at the University of Virginia, a story th . . .

Michael Reagan: A Threat to Hollywood Launched Dad's Political Career

Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 23:13 PM

Kim Jong-un isn't the only strongman to threaten Hollywood and win. He isn't even the most recent.
A new biography . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved