The next day, South Carolina’s Rep. Tim Scott (1st Dist.) was quick to point out the new numbers on his congressional website.
“That works out to almost $51,000 for every American,” he wrote upon the site, dropping blame upon the Democratic Party and claiming “it is well past time that we again regain fiscal control.”
His opponent, Democratic candidate Bobbie Rose, finds Scott’s assessment to be rather misleading, however. In addition, she says, Scott’s only supported measures that would increase the financial burden on all but the wealthy.
“First of all, about 40 percent of that isn’t current debt, but anticipated future payments of assets we already hold,” Rose says. “That’s our Federal Reserve funds preserved for national emergency, our Social Security Trust Fund and other trust funds.
“About $4 billion of it isn’t any debt of the federal government, either, but our own public debt,” she adds, offering personal mortgages, student loans and business debts as examples.
Very much of the actual government debt results from Pres. George W. Bush’s administration, too, Rose points out.
“The fact is, of that $16 trillion debt, $6.1 trillion – by far the largest single increase – came about during Bush’s eight years in office. This massive increase was due to tax cuts for the wealthy and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with the economic downturn in 2001 and the recession that started in 2007.
“In his very long political career, I don’t recall Scott ever before complaining about government debt when it came to Bush’s spending.”
$9.5 trillion of current national public debt originates from the last three Republican presidents.
“It’s interesting that when tax cuts on our wealthiest citizens were occurring during two wars,” Rose adds, “the Republican Party showed an astounding lack of interest in our national debt.”
While debt has continued growing since Bush’s exit, “the current debt is due to stimulus spending – money spent here in the U.S. The continuation of recession through 2009 resulted in lost revenue, too,” she says.
Scott’s votes and endorsements indicate that he won’t properly address this debt, either, Rose says.
“Scott has supported measures that take away from the middle class, that cost the middle class, and that only favor wealthy citizens,” citing Scott’s support for the Ryan Budget, which cut away from veterans’ benefits, and his endorsement of Mitt Romney as examples.
A recent study by the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center found that Romney’s proposed tax plan would raise income taxes on all Americans earning less than $200,000.
“That’s 95 percent of the population,” Rose points out.
“Why can’t our government do what families all across the country do when they are in debt? We find a way to bring in more money. Why can’t our government use the only solution that will work, raising revenue on our top earners?” she asks.
“Scott says stimulus spending doesn’t work, but that’s counter to what every nonpartisan economist has told us,” adds Rose.
“What doesn’t work, and will never work, is taking ‘raising revenue’ off the table.”
Also read:US Debt 101
Tim Scott: Americans aren't supposed to be equal
Budget policies, then and now
Rose to Rep. Scott: Hit the road, Tim
Scott's vets event an insult to veterans, Rose says
Scott's first-year spending high, paid to endorsers