By far, the biggest increase in federal spending in the past 20 years came under George W. Bush

Don’t tell your conservative friends about the chart above. It will only confuse them.

There’s more about this HERE:

Spending spiked up at the beginning of the Obama administration thanks to increased federal aid to people who were thrown out of work by the Great Recession, but since 2011 spending has slowly been sliding back down. Federal spending has stayed somewhat elevated to make up for declining state and local expenditures, which is as it should be during a weak economy, but not by that much. Given our current trajectory, it’s safe to say that even by 2016 the biggest increase in spending, by far, will have come during the Bush years.



  1. Big Dave

    Amazing Pat, but I’m curious about something. Your post claims spending has gone down the last year under Obama so explain how we keep getting closer to the debt limit.

    Also Pat, I keep remembering the spending went up faster under Bush after the democrats took control of the House and Senate in 2007.


    Here are the ratios of deficit to GDP for the past five presidents:

    Ronald Reagan
    1981-88 4.2 %
    1982-89 4.2
    Average 4.2

    George H. W. Bush
    1989-92 4.0
    1990-93 4.3
    Average 4.2

    Bill Clinton
    1993-2000 0.8
    1994-2001 0.1
    Average 0.5

    George W. Bush
    2001-08 2.0
    2002-09 3.4
    Average 2.7

    Barack Obama
    2009-12* 9.1
    2010-12 8.7
    Average 8.9
    *fiscal 2012 ends Sept. 30, 2012, so this figure is estimated

    Source: Economic Report of the President, February 2012

  2. Thanks for the figures Dave. Looks like we need another Clinton in the White House.

  3. Big Dave

    Steverino, just remember that republicans caused the best numbers for Clinton since they won control in 2004.

    Just too bad the republicans decided to act like democrats and lost control of both the House and senate in 2006. But when you act like a democrat most will vote for the real thing no matter how much pain they will bring!

  4. Luke Fredrickson

    Big Dave says:
    January 24, 2013 at 9:31 am
    Your post claims spending has gone down the last year under Obama so explain how we keep getting closer to the debt limit.


    Dave, it is because federal spending – as controlled by the Republican House – still surpasses revenue, thus the need for more borrowing and an increased debt limit.

    BTW, revenue always goes down when people and businesses make less money, such as in a severe recession. The corrollary: Deficits shrink during periods of economic expansion, even when spending continues to grow with inflation.

    The takeaway is the vital need for economic stimulus and recovery to lower our longterm debt. And if you think cutting taxes for the rich will do that, take a look at the Dubya’s GDP growth as well as Sen. McConnell’s squashed CBO report on the subject.

    Trickle down economics is voodoodoo. Where have I heard that before?

  5. Actually the economy does better with Democrats in control of the congress than when republicans are in control.

  6. Big Dave


    What the graph shows is this: spending under Obama has grown not gone down. All the graph said it in the last 2 years of Obama it didn’t grow as fast as the 1st two years, nothing more.

    “Here are the ratios of deficit to GDP for the past five presidents:”

    So Bush’s 2.7 is lower than Obama’s 8.9!

  7. Luke Fredrickson

    Actually Dave, you need to look a little closer at the graph. It shows spending has gone down since 2011.

    Your last point is simply a restatement of my comment above: revenues are down since 2007 and spending has increased, thus a high ratio. FYI, it needed to be that high in the short term to avoid a far worse economic collapse.

    Have no fear though…Obama is increasing revenue in ways that won’t slow the economy, and federal spending (as evidenced above) is going down as well. It is the plan he campaigned on. The American electorate agreed it was better than Rmoney’s.

    You should join me in a daily prayer of thanks to God for the miracle of American democracy!

  8. Big Dave

    Luke, I have always loved to use graphs as you can mislead almost anyone who doesn’t understand how to manipulate the numbers.

    So let me help you with something:

    1. When Obama took office in 2009 the deficit was almost 10 Trillion.
    2. Today that same deficit is just over 16 Trillion.
    3. By the end of Obama’s 2nd term it projected to be close to 20 Trillion.
    4. At that point Obama will have spent more than all Presidents before him.

    Obama has had 4 years to do something to bring in more revenue but he’s been to busy on the golf course or basketball court or out campaigning. Maybe someday he just might realize he needs to do something to create JOBS and guess what will happen if that happens, why money to the government will go up.

    Nothing this President is doing now will cause that to happen!

  9. Luke Fredrickson

    Dave, the deficit is not what a President spends (technically spending is done by the House anyway, but that is another lesson).

    The deficit measures the accumulated difference between spending and revenues. So there is simply no way “Obama will have spent more than all Presidents before him” by 2013.

    Nice try.

    Perhaps you meant to say that YOU project that the deficit will be larger than that accumulated by all other past Presidents when Obama completes his second term in January 2017. Pretty pessimistic, but haters gotta hate.

    Me? I have confidence that the American system works. The voters chose the man who presented the right kind of leadership and vision for our future. It was relatively decisive choice, I might add.

    I, for one, love this country!

  10. Luke: Big Dave is never going to get it through his skull that deficit growth does not equate with spending growth. He’ll never understand that Bush’s tax cuts have had more to do with deficit growth than Obama’s spending. The man is a hopeless wingnut.

  11. I dare you to watch this for 5 minutes without throwing up.


  12. Big Dave

    Wow, Luke did you get your information from Pat or some school? Actually both the House and Senate must pass spending bills but they are supposed to be created in the House. Another think Luke, the Senate according to the Constitution is supposed to pass a spending bill each year; I wonder why that has not happened in 4 years?

    “The deficit measures the accumulated difference between spending and revenues. So there is simply no way “Obama will have spent more than all Presidents before him” by 2013.”

    Really, Luke! What did MSNBC say this or are you too lazy to look it up and see the facts?



    And Mr. Cunningham, if I were as lazy as most in the press including you I’d be hoping and praying that you’re correct. But you know you’re wrong but must keep the lie going. I wonder why Pat is more interested in attacking anyone who disagrees with him but never and I said never shows any proof to back his claims.

    And Luke one more thing: “Dave, the deficit is not what a President spends” I have stated this before but I guess you never took the time to research it, too bad! But the press has stated that so many times you’d think the President does do this, wonder why you have never quizzed Pat on the subject.

    Luke and Pat, I wonder if either of you remember the democrat platform in 2006 when they won control of both the House and the Senate. They promised to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, will here we are in 2013 and still have troops in both places. Just another democrat lie backed by the press, but it’s all a joke to the press as they now cover nothing. Did I mention how democrats have said the wars are illegal, no and I bet that self-educated press member who runs this blog has forgot as well!

    Well read this and weep boys: I do find the one from the daily beast the most interesting. The report was done after Obama won election and I’m still wondering why were at war if it was illegal, was it because Obama now wanted the war? Yes, very interesting!


  13. Big Dave

    There is an old saying: “liars use number but numbers never lie”. I wonder if Jerry knows what I’m referring too?

    Did I mention all the graphs in your link show spend really claimed after the democrats gained control in 2006 but somehow it’s still Bush’s fault. It also shows there are less jobs but I guess Bush was at fault for that as well even after Obama was President for 3 years.

  14. We do have a revenue problem, less people working means less revenue.

    “To begin to address our deficit problem, therefore, we need to trim spending growth and increase taxes.
    Don’t believe it?

    In recent years, the federal government has developed a huge budget deficit. This is because federal spending (red) has surged, while federal tax revenue (blue) has stagnated.

    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/government-spending-and-taxes-2012-12?op=1#ixzz2J1Dpz5wS

  15. Big Dave

    “We do have a revenue problem, less people working means less revenue.”

    OMG! Have you told this to Obama? Probably not.

    I’m curious Wilson, when the family income goes down do you increase spending? Do you cut spending? Our government has decided to keep the spending going up even thou the revenue from all the taxes went down, do you see a problem here?

    During the 2006 election cycle the republicans spent too much and lost the House and Senate. In 2008 Obama made his famous speech on how Bush keep using the government credit card from the bank of China, which help him win his first term. Then Obama and the democrats keep spending at a even higher rate. Now we have a National Debt of over $16.3 Trillion. Just so you know the National Debt in January of 2009 when Obama took office we $10.5 Trillion.

    This is fact, but feel free to check the numbers. Or you can have Pat check the numbers, your choice. But if democrats will not agree to spending cuts then no more tax increases.

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