Senate Democrats

The Political Battle Over Spending: Real Dispute Is Over Priorities, Not Numbers (Bullets)

President Bush has decided to pick a major political fight with Democrats over spending.  However, as the president with the worst fiscal record in American history, who has increased spending by nearly 50 percent and increased debt by more than $3 trillion, President Bush has little standing to attack Democrats, who have passed a balanced budget, adopted strong rules to promote fiscal discipline, and made earmarking more transparent. 

Fiscal Year 2008 Appropriations

·        Democratic increases help veterans, police officers, teachers, and other working Americans.

·        Spending differences with Bush Administration are less than half of the President’s tax breaks for those earning over $1 million, and about what we spend in Iraq in two months.

·        Discretionary spending difference amounts to less than one percent of the federal budget and comparable to what President Bush repeatedly ignored under Republican Congresses.

·        These differences should be easily resolved if both parties seek to do so.

The Bush/Republican Record

·        Increased spending nearly 50 percent since 2001.

·        Increased debt by more than $3 trillion since 2001.

·        Never passed all appropriations bills before new fiscal year (since 1994).

·        Never vetoed a regular appropriations bill.

·        In Fiscal Year 2006, President Bush approved a $53 billion increase over his budget request (more than twice the Democratic increase for FY 2008).

·        Earmarks tripled since 1994.

·        Failed to enact nine of the eleven appropriations bills for Fiscal Year 2007.

·        Failed to pass a budget for 2007.

The Democratic Record

·        Budget balanced by 2012 and cut middle class taxes.

·        Restored strong “pay as you go” rules.

·        Promptly funded all domestic Fiscal Year 2007 appropriations bills with no earmarks.

·        Adopted reforms to ensure transparency for future earmarks