President Biden in his State of the Union speech took a victory lap on reduced federal spending, saying the deficit will be down by more than $1 trillion at the end of the year.
Mr. Biden‘s touting of fiscal responsibility comes as he has proposed spending packages the Congressional Budget Office estimates would add billions to the deficit over the next decade.
“By the end of this year, the deficit will be down to less than half of what it was before I took office,” Mr. Biden said. “I’m the only president ever to cut the deficit by more than one trillion dollars in a single year.”
At the start of Mr. Biden’s presidency, the federal deficit was a record $3.13 trillion, which is more than triple the $984 billion at the end of 2019 and double the previous record of $1.4 trillion in 2009, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
At the end of 2021, the federal deficit totaled $2.77 trillion for the second-highest deficit on recod, though it was still down slightly because the government was spending less to counteract the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, Mr. Biden has proposed trillions of dollars in spending that CBO estimates will add billions to the deficit over the next few years.
For example, CBO said Mr. Biden’s infrastructure package, passed into law last year, will add $256 billion to the deficit.
Mr. Biden’s $1.75 trillion social welfare and climate agenda, known as Build Back Better, would add nearly $750 billion to the federal deficit over the next five years and roughly $165 billion over the next decade, the CBO said.
That proposal derailed in the Senate because of a lack of Democratic support.