Tags: Donald Trump | conservatives | warn | deficit | derail | trump | plans

Conservatives Warn Deficit Could Derail Trump's Agenda

Conservatives Warn Deficit Could Derail Trump's Agenda

(AP)

By    |   Monday, 21 November 2016 08:56 AM

Conservative groups and Republican congressmen warn that the national debt could become a major obstacle in trying to enact President-elect Donald Trump's ambitious agenda, The Hill reports.

One of the GOP's harshest criticisms of President Barack Obama's legislation he carried out in his first term was the soaring federal deficits. Fiscal restraint and debt reduction became the main message of Republican leaders when they took back control of the House in 2010.

But now Trump's campaign pledges for a $1 trillion infrastructure package, boosts in military spending, an expensive repeal of Obamacare and $5 trillion in tax cuts will have to face the reality of how to pay for it, which never received serious attention in the run-up to the election.

The predicament is made more difficult by Trump's promises not to make cuts in Social Security or Medicare and the expected decision by the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates, which would add to the cost of the national debt.

"The suite of policy proposals that Trump put forth would explode the debt," Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget President Maya MacGuineas told The Washington Post, estimating that the president-elect's agenda would add more than $5 trillion to the existing $19.5 trillion national debt.

The Heritage Foundation's Michael Sargent told The Hill that "we did not hear anything about entitlement reform from either of the candidates and that's a serious issue. You cannot address the growth in spending without addressing entitlement issues."

Trump advisors suggest that tax credits will be enough to get projects underway and trigger massive private sector investments in infrastructure without a large boost in spending.

But Sargent said the idea that tax credits would pay for themselves is wishful thinking, because "the assumptions that are built into it I think are wildly optimistic."

Some Republicans have said a consistent growth of four percent in GDP would pay for Trump's ambitious plans, but economic experts say those estimates are widely optimistic and that the reality is the proposals will cost far more than what any economic growth would generate, according to the Post.

Former Sen. Phil Gramm concedes the point of the experts, telling The Hill that he knows "of no case in the post-war era where infrastructure has proved to be an effective stimulus in any country in the world."

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Conservative groups and Republican congressmen warn that the national debt could become a major obstacle in trying to enact President-elect Donald Trump's ambitious agenda, The Hill reports.
conservatives, warn, deficit, derail, trump, plans
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Monday, 21 November 2016 08:56 AM
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