By Terry Jeffrey
The federal debt has increased by $4.47 trillion since President Barack Obama released his first federal budget on Feb. 26, 2009. That budget was entitled, “A New Era of Responsibility.”
On Feb. 26, 2009, as Obama released his budget for fiscal 2010, the national debt stood at $10.88 trillion (10,881,159,722,022.36). At the close of business on Feb. 9, 2012, the national debt stood at $15.36 trillion ($15,355,838,921,022.16). That represents an increase in the debt of $4.47 trillion ($4,474,679,198,999.80).
The $4.47-trillion increase in the debt since Obama released his first budget is more than the national debt increased from President George Washington through President George H. W. Bush, who left office on Jan. 20, 1993. At the end of fiscal 1993 (on Sept. 30, 1993, the national debt stood at $4.41 trillion ($4,411,488,883,139.38), according to the U.S. Treasury.
“Government has failed to fully confront the deep, systemic problems that year after year have only become a larger and larger drag on our economy,” Obama said in his first budget message in February 2009. “From the rising costs of health care to the state of our schools, from the need to revolutionize how we power our economy to our crumbling infrastructure, policymakers in Washington have chosen temporary fixes over lasting solutions.
“The time has come to usher in a new era—a new era of responsibility in which we act not only to save and create new jobs, but also to lay a new foundation of growth upon which we can renew the promise of America,” said Obama.
“This Budget is a first step in that journey,” he said. “Our problems are rooted in past mistakes, not our capacity for future greatness,” Obama said in the last paragraph of that budget message.