DNC Chair Wasserman Schultz, Math & Economics
posted at 12:25 pm on April 26, 2012 by Dustin Siggins
As a young observer of, and participant in, politics, if often frustrates me when politicians are either sloppy or outright lying with their facts. Tuesday, it was Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), Chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, who on CNN’s Starting Point managed to make two statements that boggle the logical mind.
In the first, responding to Will Cain, Wasserman Schultz said the following: “The Republicans, I certainly hope, don’t send the President an extension of the Bush tax cuts, because again they increase the deficit by $700 billion.” A note to Wasserman Schultz: this is the amount the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) says extending the Bush tax cuts for the “wealthy” will increase the amount of debt garnered over a ten-year period, not a one-year period, which is the span of time a single deficit covers. The full extension would “cost,” according to the CBO’s static analyses, $3.8 trillion. Of course, this assumes you count extending current policy as a tax cut, and that you assume extending current tax policy will not bring in more economic growth than the “cost” of keeping the tax rates consistent.
Related, in saying the above, Wasserman Schultz joins many other Members of Congress in not knowing the difference between “debt” and “deficit.” One cannot “add to the deficit” over a multi-year period. One can add to deficits in each of multiple years, yes – but a deficit is the single-year negative difference between one’s incoming and outgoing funds. Debt is the accumulation of deficits. Which is why, on a side note, decreasing the federal deficit should not generally be considered an accomplishment; it simply means Congress messed up less badly than it did in the prior year.
The third error made on Starting Point was this statement: ”We need to make sure we’re not pulling revenue out of the economy. We have to put more revenue into it.” It is one thing to argue that taxing the wealthy would create more efficiency for the economy via deficit reduction, “fairness” and changed economic incentives – this is a legitimate, if wrong, policy viewpoint. However, it is laughable to think that taking money away from earners (who will spend it, save it or invest it) and putting it through the fraudulent and inefficient federal government will add more to economic growth than it takes.
According to her official Member of Congress website, Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) has two degrees in political science. Perhaps she ought to go back and take a few business and math classes. Unless she was just warming up for the thrashing she took from Fox News’ Bret Baier later that night?
Dustin Siggins is an associate producer with The Laura Ingraham Show and co-author with William Beach of The Heritage Foundation on a forthcoming book about the national debt. The opinions expressed are his own.
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