Romney-Ryan Will Add More Debt Than President Obama=Does it bother you Romney's plan will increase the debt even further?
Mitt Romney may "love data",
but he has a serious problem with math. He has simultaneously promised
to (a) extend the Bush tax cuts and then slash all rates by an
additional 20 percent; (b) keep Uncle Sam's total take "revenue-neutral"
and (c) eventually "Cut, Cap and Balance" the budget while (d) ensuring
"that high-income people would continue to pay the same share of the
tax burden that they do today." Like guaranteeing that the sun will rise
in the west and set in the east, Romney's pledge is literally
His running mate does little better. That may seem like a surprising result, given Rep. Ryan's declaration
that his mission is to "prevent an explosion of debt from crippling our
nation and robbing our children of their future." But even with his
draconian budget blueprint that cuts Medicaid by a third, ends Medicare as we know it, adds 48 million people to the ranks of the uninsured and by 2050 would result in ending all non-defense discretionary spending, over the next decade Ryan would unleash torrents of red ink from the U.S. Treasury. Ezra Klein explained how Paul Ryan came up $6.2 trillion short:
The Tax Policy Center
looked into the revenue loss associated with House Budget Chairman Paul
Ryan's plan to cut the tax code down to two rates of 10 percent and 25
percent. They estimate the changes would raise $31.1 trillion over 10
years, or 15.4 percent of GDP. That's $10 trillion less than the tax
code would raise if the Bush tax cuts were allowed to expire, and $4.6
trillion less than it would raise if all of the Bush tax cuts were
The Republican congressman says he'll "broaden the
tax base to maintain revenue...consistent with historical norms of 18 to
19 percent." So let's say Ryan needs to find close-enough deductions
and loopholes to hit 18.5 percent of GDP. That means he'd need to close
about $6.2 trillion in tax deductions and loopholes over 10 years.
But Ryan evades the responsibility for making the numbers work and
taking the heat for ending popular deductions, a role he punts to the
House Ways and Means Committee to "show how they would go about doing
this." It's no wonder Greg Sargent said Ryan's "Path to Prosperity"
plan simply "is not serious" while the New York Times called it "careless."
And one other thing. Over the next 10 years, the Ryan House budget would add substantially more to the national debt than President Obama's proposed 2013 plan.
As the Center for American Progress
explained, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) assessment of the Ryan
budget "did not test Rep. Ryan's claims about how his policies would
actually affect spending or revenue," but "merely showed what would
happen to the debt if his claims were true." In a nutshell, they are
But the House budget's entire claim to deficit
reduction is built on the foundation of those fantasy revenue levels.
Without them, the debt goes up, not down. In fact, with all the House
budget's tax cuts properly accounted for, revenue would average just
15.3 percent of GDP from 2013 through 2022, not 18.3 percent. The
result: deficits would never drop below 4.4 percent of GDP, and would
rise to more than 5 percent of GDP by 2022.
The national debt, measured as a share of GDP, would
never decline, surpassing 80 percent by 2014, and 90 percent by 2022. By
comparison, President Barack Obama's budget proposal, released in
February, would stabilize the debt by 2015, and bring it down to 76
percent by 2022.
If this all sounds familiar, it should. Because in February, Mitt Romney also rolled out a new economic plan, one which similarly hemorrhages red ink.
As it turns out, Romney's scheme to "Cut, Cap and Balance" the
federal budget does nothing of the sort. For starters, while gutting
the social safety net in order to fund yet another tax cut payday for
the gilded-class, Romney also wants to expand U.S. defense spending to
its highest level in decades. All told, he would lavishly expand Pentagon spending by $2.1 trillion over the next decade:
As the Washington Post
explained in its discussion of an analysis by the Committee for a
Responsible Federal Budget, "until the campaign offers a more specific
plan, Budget Watch analysts said Romney's entire framework would add
about $2.6 trillion to the debt by 2021." (As ThinkProgress and the Washington Post's Lori Montgomery and Ezra Klein all explained, that's likely a conservative estimate.)
In words and in pictures (above), CAP put it this way:
The various fiscal promises Gov. Romney makes simply
cannot work together. He cannot simultaneously cut taxes as he's
proposed, increase defense spending, protect Social Security and
Medicare for current and near-future retirees, and also balance the
budget. It is mathematically impossible.
Mathematically impossible and, for the American people, catastrophic.
(This piece also appears at Perrspectives.)
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