frankel119_David Hume KennerlyGetty Images_reagan tax cuts David Hume Kennerly/Getty Images

The GOP’s Fake Budget Hawks

With Donald Trump having departed the White House, many Republicans are suddenly rediscovering the dangers of budget deficits, after four years of conspicuous indifference. This was entirely predictable: for the last 45 years, the GOP has done the same thing every time a Democrat has won the presidency.

CAMBRIDGE – High among US President Joe Biden’s many priorities is reinvigorating an economy that – judging by the latest employment numbers – appeared to be slowing as 2021 began. Even if COVID-19 abates during the course of the year, and pent-up consumer demand kicks in, the United States faces immediate challenges in areas such as education, infrastructure investment, state and local finances, and especially the fight against the pandemic itself.

Biden has thus announced a $1.9 trillionAmerican Rescue Plan.” Moreover, he is rare among successful US presidential candidates in having stated honestly during the campaign that his spending would continue the recent trend of record budget deficits, notwithstanding his plans also to raise taxes on the wealthy. Most economists approve of this fiscal expansion, in light of America’s still-high unemployment, low inflation, and very low interest rates.

But with Donald Trump having departed the White House, many Republicans are suddenly rediscovering the dangers of budget deficits, after four years of conspicuous indifference. This was entirely predictable: for the last 45 years, the GOP has done the same thing every time a Democrat has held the presidency, and only then.

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