Republicans use a sound bite the the commonwealth debt doubled under Obama. In looking in ~ the numbers that is nearby to gift numerically correct but falls brief of gift 100%. Yet when friend take right into account the an excellent Recession, making W. Bush’s temporary tax cuts permanent, enhanced Social Security and also Medicare spending as much more Baby Boomers retire and become 65 year old and also the Afghanistan and also Iraq wars he inherited the story is rather different.

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U.S. President Barack Obama, previous President George W. Bush, previous President bill Clinton and... <+> former President George H.W. Shrub attend the opened ceremony the the George W. Bush Presidential Center. Picture by Alex Wong/Getty Images

There space multiple databases that have actually dollar quantities of the commonwealth debt. While they have various numbers castle are all at once close to each other and also essentially display the exact same dollar transforms over the years. I am using details from the federal Reserve that St. Louis.

Impact native the great Recession

According come the U.S national Bureau of economic Research, the good Recession started in December 2007 and ended in June 2009. President Barack Obama was sworn in top top January 20, 2009, so the had already started before he gone into office.

The first thing you notice when looking in ~ the federal deficits from fiscal 2007 (the U.S. Government fiscal year end in September) is the it boosted by almost $1 trillion from fiscal 2008 (two months prior to Obama was elected and also four months prior to he was sworn in) to budget 2009. It continued to be over $1 sunshine per year for 4 years and got below Bush’s last years deficit in budget 2015. It ongoing to decrease until Obama’s critical year and has enhanced in Trump’s an initial year in office.

fiscal 2007: $161 exchange rate (next to last year of Bush’s second term) fiscal 2008: $459 exchange rate (beginning impact from the great Recession) budget 2009: $1.4 sunshine (Obama’s an initial year and also in the this of the Recession)
fiscal 2010: $1.3 trillion Fiscal 2011: $1.3 trillion Fiscal 2012: $1.1 sunshine Fiscal 2013: $680 billion fiscal 2014: $485 billion budget 2015: $438 billion budget 2016: $587 billion budget 2017: $666 exchange rate (Trump’s very first year that his Presidency)

It is clear the the almost $1 trillion jump between fiscal 2008 and 2009 was as result of the great Recession. Taxes receipts fell, expenditure rose and Obama and Congress pass the American Economy and Reinvestment Act to combat the recession.

A far better way to analysis the commonwealth debt

Using percentages is a far better way of assessing data in a lot of instances as that compensates once the data set numbers are bigger or smaller sized from every other. Federal debt falls into this classification as it increases over time. The compounding affect of growth can make making use of absolute numbers meaningless.

How much did the total deficit climb by every President due to the fact that Reagan

Again using data indigenous the St. Louis federal Reserve, this are beginning and finishing federal blame numbers since President Reagan. I have computed the complete percentage increase and also the compounded yearly rate.

What the numbers show is that the full debt raised the many at 184% end 8 years and at the fastest price under president Reagan at virtually 14% every year. In fact, the three Republican presidents had actually the fastest cultivation debt on a yearly basis.


began Presidency: $965 billion ended Presidency: $2.74 trillion increased 184% or 13.9% every year

H.W. Bush

began Presidency: $2.74 trillion ended Presidency: $4.23 trillion increased 54% or 11.5% per year (only in office for 4 years)


started Presidency: $4.23 trillion finished Presidency: $5.77 trillion increased 36% or 4.0% per year

W. Bush

began Presidency: $5.77 trillion finished Presidency: $11.1 trillion increased 93% or 8.5% per year


started Presidency: $11.1 trillion ended Presidency: $19.85 trillion increased 78% or 7.5% every year

President Obama’s debt actually grew at a slower yearly rate than any type of of the Republican presidents also though over there were events that negatively influenced the deficit that started prior to he became President. The an excellent Recession is most likely the biggest of lock as deserve to be checked out in the yearly deficit numbers. While all political leaders use data to assistance their positions, the sound bite the the debt doubled under Obama is an extremely misleading.

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I administer independent study of modern technology companies and was previously one of two analysts that identified the an innovation holdings for Atlantic trust (Invesco"s high network worth group), a firm through $15 exchange rate under management. Prior to joining Atlantic Trust ns was the internet Security software analyst for Smith Barney (where ns authored the most comprehensive industry report “Internet protection Software: The Ultimate internet Infrastructure”) and an enterprise Server Hardware analyst at Salomon Brothers. Prior to ending up being an equity analyst, I spent 16 years at IBM in a variety of sales and manufacturing positions. I have a B.S. In Industrial design from Stanford University and also a Postgraduate Diploma in business economics from the university of Sussex, England.