While President Trump has been widely lauded for his work on the American economy, a stark reminder of our federal bloat has now arrived.
Trump’s entrance to the political world has been a whirlwind over the course of the last two years, with a number of federal programs being initiated, coming under the ax, or simply finding themselves on the receiving end of a Trump tweet storm. All of these instances move the needle on federal spending, of course, something that a great many Americans would like to see decreasing instead.
The federal government spent $1,822,712,000,000 in the first five months of fiscal 2019, the most it has spent in the first five months of any fiscal year since 2009, which was the fiscal year that outgoing President George W. Bush signed a $700-billion law to bailout the banking industry and incoming President Barack Obama signed a $787-billion law to stimulate an economy then in recession.
How unique is the predicament?
The last time the Treasury spent more than that in the first five months of a fiscal year—in inflation-adjusted constant February 2019 dollars—was fiscal 2009. That year, the Treasury spent $1,936,268,470,000.
Fiscal 2009 started with President Bush signing the Troubled Asset Relief Program into law on Oct. 3, 2008; it continued with President Obama, after his January inaugural, signing the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act on Feb. 17, 2009.
Will the GOP be able to steer America’s federal government back into the black anytime soon, or will trillion dollar bills such as the “Green New Deal” find their way back on the table?
We can only wait and see.
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