I think it is important to understand the complicated nature of our economy.
A recent letter stated, “the national debt went from 10.7 trillion to $ 19.6 trillion during the previous administration.”
This infers that it was that administrations policies that caused the increase. That figure is correct if you only look at the deficit when a president comes into office and deduct that from when he leaves office.
But that is the least accurate way to come to a fair and balanced assessment.
It is unfair to blame any president for events beyond his control. A better way to get a correct figure would be to look at only the deficits created by that presidents specific initiatives. The recession and tax cuts made by the previous administration reduced the federal income at the same time that the cost of Social Security, Medicare and other programs increased.
The largest contribution to the deficit from the Obama Administration, according to the CBO, was the Obama tax cuts which were an extension of the Bush tax cuts . That added $858 billion. The next was the American Recovery and Investment Act that extended unemployment benefits and other efforts to stimulate the economy during the recession. He increased military spending by $800 million a year and his request for a security budget to fight terrorism set a new record.
When these and other smaller increases are added, the previous administration policies can be credited with adding $983 billion to the deficit.