This chart contradicts everything Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan argue about Obama’s responsibility to adding to our national debt.
Notice the section in gray on the right. Notice how the blue line, which represents government spending, sharply rises and the red line, which represents government revenue, slips downward. That gray section represents the recession, under which George W. Bush presided, and his budget, which bleeds into the first 8 months of the first year of Obama’s presidency.
Certainly Obama didn’t do much to pull back after that massive spending spike, but you notice that the spending begins to flatten and even fall, and revenues begin to once again rise.
Let’s also look at what spending is included in that increase to the debt: (chart courtesy of The New York Times)
You can argue that Obama did not bother to end some of the spending that Bush started, extending Bush tax cuts, continuing to fight a war in Afghanistan, etc, but the bulk of the debt and the spending we’re still adding to the deficit was started under Bush.
So, if you want to have an honest conversation about Obama’s spending, it would be more accurate to say, why hasn’t he done more to end the policies that his predecesor started and how realistic is it to end those policies without the approval of a Congress that has a leader, Mitch McConnell who has explicitly stated his purpose is to see that the President fails?