Pelosi blames Bush for $9 trillion in debt added under Obama
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi blamed former President George W. Bush and the Republicans on Friday for the more than $9 trillion that has been added to the national debt under President Obama’s watch.
Pelosi argued that under Obama, the annual budget deficit, which contributes to the national debt, has been reduced dramatically, and said that without Obama’s work, the national debt would be even higher. She also mostly blamed Bush for not paying for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
“When President Obama stood on the steps on the Capitol eight years from next week, the [budget] deficit was $1.4 trillion — one year deficit,” she said. “It’s reduced by 70 percent in his administration. Much of the increase in the national debt that has occurred from this time still springs from two unpaid-for wars, cost that we owe our veterans following that, giveaways that they gave to the pharmaceutical industry, and the high-end tax cuts that have carried forward without any job production. Absent the work of President Obama, this national debt would be even higher.”
Pelosi noted the work done by former President Bill Clinton to balance the budget or leave a surplus.
“President Bush came to office, he reversed all of that,” Pelosi said. “When under President Clinton, as well as under President Obama, we were operating under a pay-as-you-go’ basis … President Bush became president, he threw ‘pay-as-you-go’ out the window and took us on a reverse path.”
She added that Bush’s decision was “very irresponsible” and that congressional Republicans reintroduced that philosophy when they took back control of Congress.
“So coming back now, we had pay-as-you-go, the debt was going down, the deficit was reduced,” Pelosi said. “Republicans come in, throw pay-as-you-go out the window. They make us pay for any investments in education that we may make, but they won’t pay for tax cuts for the wealthy.”
The national debt has increased $9.3 trillion under Obama’s watch, and has nearly doubled over the last eight years to $19.9 trillion.