The United States government has been suffering historically large budget deficits since 2009. Deficits are the amount of money spent over and above revenues each fiscal year. It is estimated that annual budget deficits will balloon further as entitlement spending increases with the aging of the Baby Boomer generation. These deficits represent money that must be borrowed to keep our government’s spending promises. As the federal government has been increasingly borrowing money to patch deficits, it has increased the national debt – the total number of dollars owed by the government across many years of borrowing – to levels never seen before in U.S. history.
According to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, the national debt has nearly doubled since 2009 and is projected to increase even further over the next decade under existing policies. The unchecked growth of our national debt poses a serious threat to our entire nation, increasing the probability of a sudden fiscal crisis, a crisis of investor confidence, and the possibility of massive interest rate hikes. Congress needs to act to get spending under control, reduce federal budget deficits, and bring down our long-term public debt.
Just as American families have to tighten their belts during hard times, the federal government must do the same. Washington is in debt because it has a spending problem, not a taxing problem. A truly balanced approach to fixing our federal budget issues must come from reducing reckless spending and eliminating special interest loopholes throughout the federal tax code.