May 15, 2013 by David K. Sutton
CBO: 2013 Estimated Federal Deficit At $642B, Half What Obama Inherited
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a report on Tuesday showing a rapidly shrinking federal budget deficit. The CBO estimates the 2013 federal deficit at $642 billion. That is down from 2012 where it was just over $1 trillion.
Los Angeles Times — Three major factors account for most of the long-term improvement: a better economy, a continued slowdown in the rate of medical inflation — which reduces the cost of Medicare and Medicaid — and higher taxes that Congress approved as part of the “fiscal cliff” deal in January, the budget office said.
In addition, the automatic budget cuts that took effect this spring have reduced spending in the short term. The government also will benefit this year from dividend payments it is getting from the two giant housing finance agencies bailed out during the financial crisis.
At $642 billion, the estimated 2013 deficit is less than half the deficit Barack Obama inherited when he become President in January 2009. At the time Obama took office, the 2009 budget was 3 months old and the economy was in the toilet. When the dust settled, the 2009 deficit added up to over $1.4 trillion. The deficit has steadily decreased since 2009, and at current estimates stands at just 45% of where it was just 4 short years ago.
Yes, it’s still a deficit. And yes, it’s still sizable. But I’d like to make one simple point. When Republicans say that Obama has gone on a spending spree, they lie, because the numbers do not.