2004 Projected Deficit Now Over Well Over $500 Billion

Way back on 8/24 the projected deficit was $480 billion (see this post). Now it’s $525b and counting. That’s another $45 billion in 15 days–deficit projections for the next year are growing by $3 billion per day. If current trends continue then by New Year’s Eve, the projected deficit will reach $846b or about $3,400 per U.S. citizen. That’s extreme. Most likely, the fiscal year 2004 deficit will turn out to be in the $550b to $600b range.(*) That’s a mere $2200-$2400 per person over the next year.

Fortunately, the grown-ups are in control. They understand the simple economics of trade-offs and tough choices. From CNN:

Senior administration officials told reporters there were no plans at the White House to seek “offsets” — or spending cuts elsewhere in the budget — to ease the strain of the new war budget request on the Treasury.

Nor is the White House open to scaling back tax cuts already passed by Congress, these officials said.

Officials still maintain that the deficit will be cut in half over the next few years. They don’t really say how this will happen, but I’m guessing it involves the magic of tax cuts and possibly the awesome stain-fighting power of Oxiclean.


(*) Because Fiscal Year 2004 starts on October 1, 2003, I’m playing a bit fast and loose with this example, but you get the point.

UPDATE: Via corrente, I find this impressive bit of buck-stops-here-ism:

Asked who bears the blame for the nation’s growing budget deficit, Bush said “It’s nobody’s fault.”