Fact Checking The President's "Paid For" Claim

Posted by Brian Patrick on

FYI – 

Today, in Richmond, President Obama reiterated his claim that “everything” in his proposal will be paid for. The latest fact check from the Associated Press doesn’t seem to agree with the President’s assessment calling his claim “conventional Washington rhetoric” that “employs sleight-of-hand accounting.”

Fact Check: Obama's Proposal Paid For? Seems Not

  • It’s Hard To See How The President’s Plan Wouldn’t Add To The Deficit. It's hard to see how the program would not raise the deficit over the next year or two because most of the envisioned spending cuts and tax increases are designed to come later rather than now ... Deficits are calculated for individual years. The accumulation of years of deficit spending has produced a national debt headed toward $15 trillion. (The Associated Press, 9/9/11)
  • The President Employed “Sleight-Of-Hand Accounting” When He Presented His Proposal. Underscoring the gravity of the nation's high employment rate, Obama chose a joint session of Congress, normally reserved for a State of the Union speech, to lay out his proposals. But if the moment was extraordinary, the plan he presented was conventional Washington rhetoric in one respect: It employs sleight-of-hand accounting. (The Associated Press, 9/9/11)
  • The President’s Proposal Is “Essentially An IOU.” Essentially, the jobs plan is an IOU from a president and lawmakers who may not even be in office down the road when the bills come due. Today's Congress cannot bind a later one for future spending. A future Congress could simply reverse it. (The Associated Press, 9/9/11)
  • There Is No Guarantee The President’s Proposal Won’t Add To The Deficit In The Long Term. Currently, roughly all federal taxes and other revenues are consumed in spending on various federal benefit programs, including Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, veterans' benefits, food stamps, farm subsidies and other social-assistance programs and payments on the national debt. Pretty much everything else is done on credit with borrowed money. So there is no guarantee that programs that clearly will increase annual deficits in the near term will be paid for in the long term. (The Associated Press, 9/9/11)

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