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Barack Obama

A Timeline of Events

Posted on 2011.08.07 at 11:49

A Timeline of Events

By Steve Benen

Let’s take a stroll down memory lane, shall we?

1980: Ronald Reagan runs for president, promising a balanced budget

1981 - 1989: With support from congressional Republicans, Reagan runs enormous deficits, adds $2 trillion to the debt.

1993: Bill Clinton passes economic plan that lowers deficit, gets zero votes from congressional Republicans.

1998: U.S. deficit disappears for the first time in three decades. Debt clock is unplugged.

2000: George W. Bush runs for president, promising to maintain a balanced budget.

2001: CBO shows the United States is on track to pay off the entirety of its national debt within a decade.

2001 - 2009: With support from congressional Republicans, Bush runs enormous deficits, adds nearly $5 trillion to the debt.

2002: Dick Cheney declares, “Deficits don’t matter.” Congressional Republicans agree, approving tax cuts, two wars, and Medicare expansion without even trying to pay for them.

2009: Barack Obama inherits $1.3 trillion deficit from Bush; Republicans immediately condemn Obama’s fiscal irresponsibility.

2009: Congressional Democrats unveil several domestic policy initiatives — including health care reform, cap and trade, DREAM Act — which would lower the deficit. GOP opposes all of them, while continuing to push for deficit reduction.

September 2010: In Obama’s first fiscal year, the deficit shrinks by $122 billion. Republicans again condemn Obama’s fiscal irresponsibility.

October 2010: S&P endorses the nation’s AAA rating with a stable outlook, saying the United States looks to be in solid fiscal shape for the foreseeable future.

November 2010: Republicans win a U.S. House majority, citing the need for fiscal responsibility.

December 2010: Congressional Republicans demand extension of Bush tax cuts, relying entirely on deficit financing. GOP continues to accuse Obama of fiscal irresponsibility.

March 2011: Congressional Republicans declare intention to hold full faith and credit of the United States hostage — a move without precedent in American history — until massive debt-reduction plan is approved.

July 2011: Obama offers Republicans a $4 trillion debt-reduction deal. GOP refuses, pushes debt-ceiling standoff until the last possible day, rattling international markets.

August 2011: S&P downgrades U.S. debt, citing GOP refusal to consider new revenues. Republicans rejoice and blame Obama for fiscal irresponsibility.

There have been several instances since the mid 1990s in which I genuinely believed Republican politics couldn’t possibly get more blisteringly ridiculous. I was wrong; they just keep getting worse.


Allyn Gibson
tiggerallyn at 2011-08-07 16:34 (UTC) (Link)
I chanced across Washington Monthly about three months ago, and it's now become one of my daily politics stops. This post from yesterday, just by laying out the facts, is powerful and compelling.

Michael Tomasky makes a similar argument in his latest column for The Daily Beast.
Jonathan Andrew Sheen
leviathan0999 at 2011-08-07 21:10 (UTC) (Link)
It's really amazing to me that these simple facts are so completely outside of the discussion. How is there anyone in America who buys into the lies of the Right Wing?
sgt_majorette at 2011-08-07 16:49 (UTC) (Link)

Domestic Terrorists

That's what they're calling the Tea Party around here. Advocating the overthrow of the government by force? Check.
Jonathan Andrew Sheen
leviathan0999 at 2011-08-07 21:11 (UTC) (Link)

Re: Domestic Terrorists

They are so right!
heron_pose at 2011-08-07 17:15 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you!
Jonathan Andrew Sheen
leviathan0999 at 2011-08-07 21:22 (UTC) (Link)
Why don't more people know this stuff!?!? It's all right there for the world to see!
pawo at 2011-08-07 20:34 (UTC) (Link)
Jonathan, why do you hate America?
Jonathan Andrew Sheen
leviathan0999 at 2011-08-07 21:23 (UTC) (Link)
Because Americans watch (and believe) Fox News, and vote for (and believe) Republicans.

Oh, yeah, and the pathological fear of Sn00bs!
(Anonymous) at 2011-08-12 17:48 (UTC) (Link)
GORGEOUS post. too lazy to log in. And yeah, you're a total American-hater! What are you, an illegal immigrant terrorist or something?
Jonathan Andrew Sheen
leviathan0999 at 2011-08-12 17:52 (UTC) (Link)
Could be worse. I could be a terrifying Ay-rab Muslim!
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