President Biden insisted on Friday that the November 8 midterm elections are not a “referendum” on him while touting “a record decrease” in the federal deficit – despite it being high in due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its own first year-long stimulus spending and is on the rise again due to its student debt cancellation.
“The election is not a referendum. It’s a choice. It’s a choice,” Biden said at the White House. “And Republicans criticize my economic record. But look what I inherited. And what I did and look what they offer.
The president asserted that in the “new deficit figures, there is a record, a record decrease. This has never happened before” and that “if the Republicans get what they want, the deficit will skyrocket and the tax burden will fall on the middle class”.
Government deficit spending has been lower over the past year due to higher tax revenues and lower COVID-19 related spending – although debt has continued to rise beyond 31 trillion dollars amid the worst inflation since 1981.
The federal deficit in fiscal year 2022, which ended Sept. 30, was $1.38 trillion, down dramatically from $2.77 trillion in fiscal year 2021 and $3.13 trillion. dollars in fiscal year 2020, the first year of the coronavirus pandemic.
But in September, the deficit jumped 562%, according to the Treasury Department, which explains Biden’s attempt to cancel between $10,000 and $20,000 in federally held student loans per borrower. This plan is estimated at 400 billion dollars.
The previous year’s deficit was still the fourth-highest on record, after 2009’s $1.42 trillion caused by corporate bailouts and lower tax revenues during the Great Recession.
Biden, whose approval rating is averaging about 42%, was conspicuously absent from the midterm campaign – but he said on Friday he hoped Democrats could still win.
“Polls have been everywhere. I think we’re going to see another shift on our side in the last few days,” Biden said. “Let me tell you why I think that. We are starting to see some of the good news on the economy. Gas prices are down sharply in 46 out of 50 states because of what I did. We are heading in the right direction and there is more to come. State Unemployment Today, state unemployment is at an all-time low in 11 states and 17 states have unemployment rates below 3%.
Republicans accused Biden of releasing oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve to help midterm Democrats and raised Biden’s possible impeachment for asking the Saudi Arabia-led OPEC+ cartel to delay a decision to reduce production until after the elections.
Biden’s deficit-cutting claims have been ridiculed by conservatives who point out that he presided over massive spending bills blamed for fueling the highest inflation in 41 years.
Last year, Biden signed a $1.9 trillion stimulus bill that passed without Republican support and the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill. This year, he signed the bipartisan $280 billion CHIPS and Science Act, a $437 billion environmental and health care spending bill, and a $270 billion veterans health care bill. billions of dollars.
Although some of the spending bills contained revenue offsets, skeptics have accused Democrats of budget gimmicks to paint a rosier economic picture.
Republicans are campaigning to slow spending and potentially return to the Treasury some unspent funds from legislation passed during Biden’s first two years in office.
New York Rep. Elise Stefanik, the No. 3 Republican in the House, told the Post on Monday that the GOP would seek to “recoup this reckless spending” to reduce inflation.
“Inflation is by far the number one concern of voters, not just in my riding, but across the country,” Stefanik said.
“What are the Republicans going to do? It is the number one priority and in our “Pledge to America”, a strong economy. And the first way we start to strengthen the economy is to curb inflation by stopping reckless spending bills,” she added. “We will absolutely use this power…not just to claw back this reckless spending, but to put a stop to Joe Biden’s spending proposals…and that will start to bring the rate of inflation down.”
New York Post