Who is Responsible for the U.S. Debt?

The GOP and their conservative friends in the media have been telling us that our  national debt belongs to the Obama presidency.

The debt is about fourteen trillion dollars ($14,300,000,000,000.00) , which comes to about $47,000 for each and every person the United States.  Clearly, we don’t want more.

But the Reagan and the two Bush administrations were responsible for two-thirds of our debt ($9.5 trillion), while the Obama and Clinton administrations together account for about one-fourth ($4 trillion) of the debt.

The Bush and Obama debts were mostly due to the famous Bush tax cuts -- which are still in place -- and our two disastrous middle-East wars.


Another GOP lie -- Democrats are the “tax-and-spend” party, while the GOP controls spending.  Hardly the case since 1981.  The GOP-controlled Congress from 2001 through 2008 happily voted for every tax cut, war expenditure and earmark that came through their committees, without a peep of complaint about the rising national debt.  Raising the debt limit was also “no problem”.

When Nancy Pelosi took over as Speaker of the House in 2008, she insisted on  -- and got -- balanced appropriation bills.  Any new spending had to be compensated by a cut or revenue somewhere else.

So -- should we label the GOP as the “no tax-but-spend” party?

William Barrett



San Jose Mercury-News, August 2, 2011, page A6