Accuracy in Media

On February 26, 2009, nine days after he signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and one day after Congress passed the Omnibus Appropriations Act—that Barack Obama would go on to sign—Obama said, “[W]hile we must add to our deficits in the short term to provide immediate relief to families and get our economy moving, it is only by restoring fiscal discipline over the long run that we can produce sustained growth and shared prosperity.” When does this “fiscal discipline” start? “This is a process that will take some time,” the President said, “but in the last 30 days alone, we have already identified $2 trillion in deficit reductions that will help us cut our deficit in half by the end of my first term.” That should make up for what he has spent in the first 60 days of his term.

Here is the citizens’ part: “But we’ll also have to do something more—we will, each and every one of us, have to compromise on certain things we care about, but which we simply cannot afford right now. That’s a sacrifice we’re going to have to make.” Where is the government’s sacrifice? In the thousands of earmarks on the Omnibus bill that President Obama signed into law—earmarks that, according to the President’s campaign—should never have been passed? Or maybe in President Obama’s new budget?

U.S. Representative Devin Nunes (R-CA) argued at a Conservative Bloggers Briefing that the government’s sacrifice is either non-existent or extremely minimal. He said that President Obama could surpass the debt of all other presidents combined by the end of his term if he does not end his reckless “government spending spree.” He used California as an example of what the country could end up as. In five words, Nunes summed up California’s situation: “California is done.” He said, “It’s over.” He asserted that the problem stems from the Californian government’s willingness and eagerness to give “everything to everyone.” He said that “what you have in California is a very dangerous, dangerous situation where the government is essentially insolvent. There’s no way they’re going to be able to come out of this hole without serious reforms.”

Nunes argued, “[I]f you continue to have inaction or—even worse yet—things like this new Obama budget…you’re going to end up with exactly what you have in California, which is a complete meltdown.”

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