Even as his administration touts the massive spending in the Inflation Reduction Act and a costly plan to forgive student loans for millions of Americans, President Joe Biden is attempting to take credit for reducing the deficit.
In reality, the $1.7 trillion reduction he touted during a recent campaign event in Maryland is attributed almost entirely to the fact that pandemic-era stimulus packages and other programs have recently expired.
Nevertheless, he used the talking point at a rally on Thursday while attempting to make the case that Democrats deserve to remain in control of Congress after the upcoming midterm elections.
“We’ve reduced the deficit,” he declared. “The Inflation Reduction Act lowers the deficit by $300 billion over the next 10 years, and that’s on top of the $350 billion I reduced the deficit last year and the $1.5 trillion dollars reducing it this year.”
Of course, he skimmed over the fact that Congress approved two massive stimulus packages during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, which caused the nation’s debt to increase by more than $9 trillion since the beginning of the 2019 fiscal year.
The bipartisan Congressional Budget Office explained the reason for nominal deficit reduction in a recent report, noting that the “effects of legislative changes on the deficit will be considerably smaller in 2022 and 2023 than in 2020 ($2.3 trillion) and 2021 ($2.6 trillion) because several provisions of pandemic-related legislation will expire or wind down.”
Furthermore, the CBO noted that an infrastructure bill pushed by the Biden administration and passed with bipartisan support in Congress tips the scale at roughly $2 trillion and will add about $400 billion to the national deficit. A number of other measures in Biden’s legislative agenda will also add to the nation’s debt — and his student loan forgiveness scheme is expected to add another $600 billion.
Literally all of the IRA’s deficit reduction wiped out, with Biden adding like half a TRILLION to the national debt in a month. https://t.co/qd4B6j7Qy0
— Tiana Lowe (@TianaTheFirst) August 26, 2022
While economists say the Inflation Reduction Act will help bring down the deficit in the long term, its short-term impact on the economy has been a sore point for pundits and politicians in both parties.
As a recent Morning Consult poll determined, 57% of respondents across the ideological spectrum believe the spending plan will either have no noticeable effect on inflation or will ultimately exacerbate the situation.