Guest hosting The O'Reilly Factor, Laura Ingraham criticized President Obama for saying that the Bush tax cuts -- rather than health care reform and a stimulus that "didn't work" -- are largely to blame for the debt. But the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that the Affordable Care Act will actually reduce deficits, and economists have said the recovery act increased employment and lifted the economy.
Ingraham Calls On Obama To Blame The Debt On Health Care Reform And A Stimulus That "Didn't Work"
Ingraham: "We Just Got Through Putting $1.2 Trillion Into Debt" Through Health Care Reform And Stimulus "That Didn't Work." On The O'Reilly Factor, Ingraham criticized Obama for saying that the Bush tax cuts contributed to the debt and said:
Now, we just got through putting $1.2 trillion into debt. We put that into this health care bill. That wasn't paid for. We put an enormous amount of money into this stimulus. That didn't work. We have all this other money going out the window: child nutrition bill, $6 billion; billions of dollars for all these other, you know, green job initiatives and so forth. Was any of that paid for? I mean, the tax cuts are the reason we're $14 trillion in debt? [Fox News, The O'Reilly Factor, 7/15/11]
But The CBO Estimated That Health Reform Would Reduce Deficits
CBO, JCT Found Health Care Reform Legislation Would Reduce The Deficit By $143 Billion Through 2019. From a March 20, 2010, CBO cost estimate of the Senate health reform bill and the health care and education reconciliation bill:
CBO and JCT [Joint Committee on Taxation] estimate that enacting both pieces of legislation -- H.R. 3590 and the reconciliation proposal -- would produce a net reduction in federal deficits of $143 billion over the 2010-2019 period as result of changes in direct spending and revenues (see Table 1). That figure comprises $124 billion in net reductions deriving from the health care and revenue provisions and $19 billion in net reductions deriving from the education provisions. [Congressional Budget Office, 3/20/10]
Estimate Also Found Reform Legislation Would Continue To Reduce Deficit In Second Decade. CBO further stated:
Reflecting the changes made by the reconciliation proposal, the combined effect of enacting H.R. 3590 and the reconciliation proposal would also be to reduce federal budget deficits over the ensuing decade relative to those projected under current law--with a total effect during that decade in a broad range around one-half percent of GDP. [Congressional Budget Office, 3/20/10]
And The Stimulus Raised Employment And Boosted GDP
CBO: Economic Stimulus Added Millions Of Jobs To The Economy In First Quarter Of 2011. A May 2011 report by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act lowered the unemployment rate "by between 0.6 percentage points and 1.8 percentage points," and "[i]ncreased the number of people employed by between 1.2 million and 3.3 million" in the first quarter of 2011. [Congressional Budget Office, 5/25/11]
CBO: Economic Stimulus Raised GDP In The First Quarter Of 2011. The same CBO report estimated that the recovery act "raised real (inflation-adjusted) gross domestic product (GDP) by between 1.1 percent and 3.1 percent" in the first quarter of 2011. [Congressional Budget Office, 5/25/11]
Independent And Private Analysts: Stimulus Significantly Raised Employment And GDP. In its sixth quarterly report on the recovery act, the White House Council of Economic Advisers cited several economic estimates that concluded the stimulus increased GDP and lowered unemployment.
[Council of Economic Advisers, 3/18/11]