Democrats have been running Congress for nearly four years, and President Obama has been at the White House for 18 months, so it’s not too soon to ask: How’s that working out? One devastating scorecard came out Friday from the White House, in the form of its own semi-annual budget review.
The message: Tax revenues are smaller, spending is greater, and the deficits are thus larger than the White House has been saying. No wonder it dumped the news on the eve of a sweltering mid-July weekend.
Mr. Obama inherited a recession, so let’s give him a pass on the budget numbers for 2009. Clearly the deficit would have been large no matter who was President, even if the David Obey-Nancy Pelosi $862 billion stimulus made it larger than it otherwise would have been. What’s striking about the latest budget estimates, however, is that the White House is predicting the numbers won’t improve much through 2011, the third year of the President’s term.
As a share of the economy, the White House now says the deficit in fiscal 2010, which ends on September 30, will be even larger than in 2009: 10%. That’s after a full year of economic growth, given that the recovery began last summer. More remarkable still, the deficit will barely fall in fiscal 2011, declining only to 9.2% of GDP in the second year of a recovery that ought to be gaining steam.
Full story: Review & Outlook: The Democratic Fisc – WSJ.com