Friday, July 30, 2010
FactCheck.org, Geithner’s GDP Whopper:
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner made a false claim about the size of government spending being proposed by the Obama administration.
On NBC’s "Meet the Press" July 25, he said the president is proposing spending "as a share of our economy" that is "lower" than it was during the Bush administration and "comparable" to what it was under Ronald Reagan. Neither claim is true.
The administration’s own estimates project spending next year that is higher as a percentage of the economy than in any year since the end of World War II. The average projected by Obama’s budget officials is significantly higher than the average under Reagan or Bush (father or son).
Here’s what Geithner said:
Geithner: [The president has] proposed to freeze discretionary spending, to keep the overall size of the government at a very modest level as a share of our economy. If you look again at what the president’s proposing, he keeps the overall size of government at a very modest level comparable to–lower than what was in the Bush administration, comparable to what President Reagan presided over. That’s very important.
That’s not true, as a glance at this chart shows. It reflects official historical spending figures as a share of the nation’s economic output, as measured by gross domestic product (or GDP), plus the very latest estimates of current and future spending produced by Obama’s own Office of Management and Budget.