The GOP are lying about deficits and they’ve got a lot of their right-wingers duped. They didn’t care one bit about deficit spending for eight years during the George W. Bush administration. In fact, Republican administrations have a pattern of deficit spending. As you can see from the graphic below, Republicans ran up deficits under Reagan and both Bush administrations, and at a higher rate than either Clinton or Obama. Wasn’t it Dick Cheney who said, “deficits don’t matter”?
The GOP claims that President Obama’s 2009 stimulus spending increased the deficit, but it was actually the recession, the free fall in the economy and the loss of tax revenue due to massive jobs lost that contributed to the deficit between 2008 and 2009. During 2010 and 2011, as the economy began to show signs of recovery the deficit began to shrink. But, Republicans don’t want you to know that.
Paul Krugman, Op-Ed Columnist for The New York Times, explains why deficit hawks should not be taken seriously. They cry austerity, but their real objective is to “starve the beast”. The GOP long-standing strategy is to cut taxes, run deficits that would require spending cuts to entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare, which they hate. Bottom line is the Republicans have thrown up the smoke screen of the deficit. Republicans don’t hate the deficit, they love it. They will leverage it as a tool to gain political points in their quest to oppose President Obama on just about everything, and in an attempt to shrink, what they call, “big” government.