It’s always been amazing to me how Republicans successfully market themselves as the party of fiscal responsibility when they almost always do the exact opposite when in office. And as Forbes reports, the new budget and Trump’s priorities going forward will make make trillion dollar deficits an annual reality.
In July, the Congressional Budget Office projected (Table 1) that the Trump fiscal 2018 budget will result in an average annual deficit of about $677 billion between 2018 and 2022. But that took the Trump budget preposals at face value and assumed Congress would agree to all the spending cuts proposed by the White House, something that the House and Senate have already shown no interest in doing. That makes the average annual baseline deficit over the next five years closer to $750 billion.
While the White House and its congressional supporters insist the tax cut the House and Senate will consider in the next month or so will eventually pay for itself with much higher economic growth rates, the congressional budget resolution passed by the Senate late last Thursday (and highly likely to be accepted by the House) assumes that the deficit will increase by about $150 billion a year over the next 10 years. Nonpartisan analyses show that the deficit will increase by an average of between $220 billion and $240 billion between 2018 and 2027 and even more thereafter. An average of the three estimates results in about a $200 billion increase in the budget deficit for each of the next five years.
That will make the annual deficit around $940 billion.
And that doesn’t include the fact that Congress “appears to be ready to increase the amount it will appropriate for military and domestic programs by at least $50 billion a year above what Trump requested” and the fact that ending the CSR subsidies under Obamacare “will increase the budget deficit by an average of about $19 billion a year.” That’s a trillion dollars a year.
Remember when the Republicans were throwing a fit about the big deficits early in the Obama administration? But consider that those were the result of federal tax revenue crashing due to the worst recession since the Great Depression, whereas Trump and the Republicans now have an economy that has grown at a slow but steady pace for many years. They’re only the party of fiscal responsibility in rhetoric, when attacking the Democrats. When they have power — and they control both the White House and both houses of Congress — deficits go up, not down.