Citizen Group Offers “10 Frightening Facts” on Obama’s Budget

National Taxpayers Union Foundation
February 1, 2010

(Alexandria, VA) – Even after warning that the federal government “cannot continue to borrow against our children’s future, or allow special interests to determine how public dollars are spent,” President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2011 budget released today fails on both counts, according to an analysis from the non-partisan National Taxpayers Union Foundation (NTUF).

“As hard as the White House tries to reassure Americans about the nation’s finances, taxpayers have many reasons to be afraid – very afraid – that President Obama’s team won’t fare any better at controlling deficit spending than the Bush Administration did,” said NTUF Senior Policy Analyst Demian Brady. “Combine this with the current President’s embrace of economy-killing tax policies, and the outlook is largely grim.” Here are NTUF’s 10 underreported facts about President Obama’s budget:

1) Debts Arrive Sooner. Last year’s budget projected that Gross Federal Debt would hit 100 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2017. This year’s budget now predicts the mark will be reached in 2012.

2) Budget Restraint: More Like a Toothpick than a Hatchet or a Scalpel. Outlays as a percentage of GDP are estimated to reach 25.1 percent in 2011, a slight improvement from 25.4 percent in 2010. The last two years when outlays as a percentage of GDP were higher than 25 percent in two successive years were 1944 and 1945; by 1950, it had dropped to 15.6 percent. By 2015, outlays are still forecast to reach 22.9 percent.

3) Recycled Program Cuts. The budget lists cuts and reductions to 78 discretionary programs totaling $10.3 billion annually. Of these, 24 items (representing $4.5 billion in savings) were also included in last year’s list of savings and terminations, which means they’ve already been rejected by Congress. Twenty-five mandatory program changes are proposed, 15 of which were lifted straight out of last year’s budget. New cuts range from the commendable – $3.5 billion for NASA – to the paltry: $5 million by cutting grants to worsted wool manufacturers.

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