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Bush 2007 budget quietly omits impact of policies on deficit

John Byrne
Published: February 7, 2006

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President George W. Bush's fiscal year 2007 budget quietly omits a table included in previous years which lays out the impact of the Administration's proposed policies on the deficit, RAW STORY has learned.

The image above shows the table of contents for the summary tables of the 2006 and 2007 fiscal year budgets proposed by President Bush. The 2006 summary includes "S-12, Impact of Budget Policy"; the 2007 does not. All other categories have been retained.

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The missing table was first discovered by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Its omission -- a single table among thousands and thousands of pages that follow a standard format each year -- likely signals that the Administration is trying to keep the focus off the massive deficits which the United States will incur after 2010.

Bloomberg News notes that under the 2007 budget, the federal deficit would decline until 2010 and then start rising at a remarkable rate.

"If Congress makes Bush's 2001 and 2003 tax cuts permanent, most of the impact won't be felt until after 2011, long after the president has left office," the financial news service writes. "Some of the tax reductions are due to expire at the end of 2008 and the rest in 2010."

The loss of revenue between 2012 and 2016 is projected at $2.2 trillion.

The deficit was resolved for the first time under President Bill Clinton, when the U.S. budget showed a surplus. Since President Bush took office, his tax cuts have reopened the deficit door. Last year's budget deficit was $413 billion.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, in their analysis, posits that the economic cost could be greater after 2011.

"Even these figures for 2011 significantly understate the long-term effect the President’s budget would have in swelling the deficit," the Center writes. "Several of the additional tax cuts the Administration is proposing — including costly proposals related to health savings accounts and to retirement and lifetime savings accounts — are designed such that their costs in the first five or ten years would be substantially smaller than their costs in subsequent decades, when they would lose huge amounts of revenue."

Bush team, critics weigh in on budget

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld defended the budget's increased military spending last week, saying the U.S. must continue to upgrade military spending and resources to ensure America's safety.

"No nation, no matter how powerful, has the resources or capability to defend everywhere, at every time, against every conceivable type of attack," Rumsfeld remarked. "The only way to protect the American people, therefore, is to provide our military with as wide a range of capabilities, rather than preparing to confront any one particular threat."

Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) slammed the Administration's budget, echoing a theme Democrats sought to advance in both previous presidential elections, namely that the Republican proposals are predicated on the interests of the rich.

The budget, Clinton said, shows "that the most important thing to this administration are tax cuts being made permanent for the wealthiest of Americans."

Even some Republicans have criticized the depth of the cuts in domestic programs Bush has proposed in order to leave room for military spending and capacious tax cuts. But Bush's team has shrugged off such complaints, saying they are committed to "fiscal discipline."

"This budget represents the president's dedication to fiscal discipline, an efficient federal government and the continuation of a thriving U.S. economy," Treasury Secretary John Snow told the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday.



 


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