The transparency of the hypocrisy evidenced by the born-again deficit hawks remains stunning. For most of the past decade under President Bush, conservatives didn’t give two hoots about the federal deficit. How do we know this? Because during that period they (abetted by the half-hearted opposition of many congressional liberals) aggressively pursued the enactment of fiscally irresponsible policies that squandered the surpluses of the Clinton years with massive tax cuts for the wealthy and a pair of expensive wars. Then the economy tanked and President Obama inherited a three ring mess.
Now, all of a sudden, as the President tries desperately to keep the economy afloat and prime the economic pump with modest recovery spending that amounts to only a small fraction of the overall deficit problem, conservatives have gotten religion again on the issue of deficits. The cynicism of the Obama critics is enough to make your head spin.
To read a wonky and fact-based confirmation of this summary, check out the new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities that was released today entitled “Critics still wrong on what’s driving deficits in coming years: Economic downturn, financial rescues and Bush-era policies drive the numbers.”