Donald Trump’s newly released tax plan would add a staggering $10 trillion to the national debt over a decade, according to scoring by the Tax Foundation, a well-respected (especially in conservative circles) nonpartisan source. To put that into perspective, that’s more debt than Barack Obama—by far the most profligate president in American history—has managed to rack up so far on his watch (although he’s not done yet). According to the Treasury Department, the national debt has risen an unconscionable $9 trillion under Obama, from $9.2 trillion when he took office to $18.2 trillion today. But all by itself, Trump’s tax plan would generate more debt than 80 months of Obama.
To be clear, that’s after accounting for the increased economic growth that Trump’s plan would spur—and it would spur a lot of growth, raising the gross domestic product by 11 percent (or about $3 trillion) in year-10 compared to what it otherwise would have been, according to the scoring. In “static scoring,” which doesn’t take into account tax cuts’ effect on growth (and hence is of rather limited use), Trump’s plan would reduce revenues by $12 trillion. The economic growth and corresponding tax revenues that his plan would generate would decrease that shortfall by about $2 trillion, to $10.14 trillion, but that’s all.