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Poll: Obama Falls Behind Republicans on Deficit Issue

Written by Gary North on March 12, 2013

In a recent poll, 44% of people polled said they prefer the Republican’s stand on the deficit. Only 42% preferred Obama.

This means that the country remains split.

This means that gridlock prevails this month.

This means that the Republicans have not yet capitulated on hiking the debt ceiling. They will in May.

The present value of the federal government’s unfunded liabilities is over $222 trillion. So, there is no hope of balancing the budget until the federal government defaults. But in the phony Punch and Judy show that we call the United States government, the Republicans are a little bit ahead of Obama in the public’s view of the deficit.

About 44% of the public is sensible enough to know that the $85 billion worth of reductions in spending hikes that are scheduled for this fiscal year will not destroy the economy. They know that Obama’s cry that the country needs another increase in taxes is nonsense. This is marginally good news. At least with respect to an almost meaningless $85 billion reduction in spending increases in a federal budget that totals an estimated $3.8 trillion, the voters have got this much of the picture: it will not do any good to raise taxes.

The real showdown will come in late March, when the government quits playing games by juggling the budget. It will have to lay off people.

The government is playing the old trick of laying off workers that the public thinks we need, so as to force Congress to capitulate. The millions of faceless bureaucrats who labor in obscurity doing who knows what will continue to do whatever it is that they do. The government threatens to cut border patrol agents’ salaries by 35%.

My guess is that the border patrol will be able to hire replacements for a handful of agents who quit in protest. I could be wrong. But if the agents walk off the job, Obama, as Commander-in-Chief, can order the U.S. Army to man the border with Mexico. If he really wants to close the border, he can do this at any time. If he doesn’t do this in the face of a wave of resignations, then the border patrol issue is just a smokescreen. It’s part of a political game to see who blinks first: Boehner or Obama.

The showdown is mostly show, hardly anything down. There is nothing of substance at stake, other than political brownie points over who blinks first.

The economy will not crash just because a bunch of overpaid federal bureaucrats have their salaries cut. Better yet, they may quit. They will return to the private sector, where they can become productive for the first time in their careers. They will cease being a drain on the economy.

Keynesians are on the sidelines, wringing their hands in desperation. They think this slight decline in federal spending increases is some kind of Rubicon that Congress has crossed. They think that the economy is headed for ruin because of these cuts in spending hikes. It isn’t. It is headed for ruin because the cuts are so minimal.

So, to this extent, I am enjoying the show. Anything that sends Paul Krugman into apoplexy isn’t all bad. He is appalled.

The right policy would be to forget about the whole thing. America doesn’t face a deficit crisis, nor will it face such a crisis anytime soon. Meanwhile, we have a weak economy that is recovering far too slowly from the recession that began in 2007. And, as Janet Yellen, the vice chairwoman of the Federal Reserve, recently emphasized, one main reason for the sluggish recovery is that government spending has been far weaker in this business cycle than in the past. We should be spending more, not less, until we’re close to full employment; the sequester is exactly what the doctor didn’t order.

The liberals’ favorite economic clown got out his make-up once again, painted on his famous Emmett Kelly frownie face,  and headed out to entertain the readers of the New York Times with another column. It is always a treat to see him perform. It reminds us that Keynesians never saw a government deficit they didn’t like.

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16 thoughts on “Poll: Obama Falls Behind Republicans on Deficit Issue

  1. William Zorka says:

    In the Army you as the President were then an Officer we would have to send you to school to learn how to be a leader and be able to work with people. Americans do not like someone to keep telling them what is right for them and won’t let the American decide for themselves. In fact they really hate the person that won’t listen but keeps making decisions for them no matter what they tell the officer. In combat you would not last very long. This is a country of the free and who are allowed to supposedly make their own decisions. the majority would win. The Americans have a very low opinion of people that constantly lie and cheet. They usually stop listening to you. The sooner you learn this the better off you will be and so the USA. I really hope you can understand this and start listening what the people want and not what you want. I would very much be interested in your written comments.

  2. You really think many of the government bureaucrats would become "productive" in the private sector for the first time in their lives?

  3. William M Durham says:

    I have personally been fed up with the total lack of leadership displayed by both Congress and the President for several years now. Its always the other sides fault and the wold will end unless we tax more and spend more. Well its show and tell time now, the President said in one of the debates that the sequester would never happen, he would not let it happen, thats what he said and everyone watching heard it, well its happened. Whats next Mr President? Guess we will all have to tighten our belts alittle. When a can of soup can cost you $2.49 and a gallon of gas cost you $3.56 and there are no jobs about, well where is our leadership? Playing golf with Tiger or on vacation as Congress wrings its hands and crys the blues, but still does nothing. Ships don't sail, 4 day work weeks, We all got here together, what are we going to do with no leadership at all on either side. Mr President you said you won the election and had a mandate to do it your way, well right or wrong you have to do something, You had better make some kind of deal with someone or we won't have a Country to call our own.

  4. MetaCynic says:

    The problem is not too little leadership. The problem is way too much leadership. Adults do not need people with guns, which is in reality what politicians and bureaucrats are, to take their money and then tell them what to do.

    The activities of people with guns are a big drag on the economy. They need to be disarmed and shoved out of the way so that risk taking entrepreneurs can serve customers to get the economy moving again. Those who in the eyes of customers, create value, will be rewarded. Those who don't will lose money. Yes, it really is that simple to turn things around.

  5. David Hauck says:

    If Gordon Ramsey was running this kitchen he would SHUT IT DOWN!!!

  6. David Hauck says:

    If Chef Ramsey was running this kitchen he would Shut it down!

  7. As much as I dislike the guy for his cruel & abrasive manner, I gotta agree with you here!

  8. moresheet says:

    Medicare vs Medicaid
    a small suffix separates the two major health care programs run by the federal and state governments, but their relative political, budgetary, and equity considerations are miles apart. When Obama lumps “entitlements” together, he inevitably means Medicare and Social Security. But the entitlements that need reining in are neither of these; they are Medicaid, food stamps, disability, subsidized housing, and welfare.

    Republicans, from Congressman Paul Ryan on down, must take aim at the means tested entitlements and leave the Democrats to propose cuts in Social Security or Medicare.

    Last year, Medicaid costs rose by 12.3%. Spending on food stamps has risen 135% over the past four years. Disability rolls are up by 50% since 2003. These are the programs that must be reined in. By contrast, the growth in Medicare and Social Security has been less than 10%.

  9. joseph g says:

    really. The pos was relected even though he is nothing more than a foreign exchange student.

  10. give obamy a break… he needs more golf practice because he sure IS NOT a LEADER! Take his golf clubs away and NO more paid vacations! How about we take AF1 away as well. He and his other half are always on vacation and running up a tab on US(A)! Is he a typical demoncrap? Are we going to have another fixed election next time around or will there be a NEXT time?

  11. Maurice B. Craghead says:

    John Boy,
    To all of these comments, what is wrong with simply following the Constitution, as it was written and intended? There in the Constitution is the answer to all of our problems. Including the answer to the huge national debt, to the Federal Reserve System, to the Democratic vs Republican issue. To the United Nations issue, to the "Credit Money system. Read it, Study it, and you have to agree. It is all right there. All we need is for the three branches of Government to in force them.

  12. Gordon Ramsey or Chef Ramsey big deal to you 2 idiots! Go back to your made -up reality T.V. its obvious your way to dumb to be any help here. I'm surprised you had the time to get away from your T.V.'s long enough to make a statement. Let me guess… your so fat from doing nothing but watch T.V. you can't get out of the house, right?

  13. Good thoughts, but congress, the senate and the White House don't follow the constitution, their making up the rules they want to follow as needed for them to keep the wool pulled over the country's eyes. Their not going to follow anything from the real constitution of this country, that's not good television. Besides the stupid sheep that follow the thief in the White House are way too stupid to do anything but whatever he tells them to do.

  14. nevertoolate says:

    Too bad that we the people do not have a say in how this country should be run! Obama is just a puppet and does not have the slightest idea about anything except campaigning. It would be nice if we knew just who is running the show that is destroying our country on purpose, but since this is the only well kept secret, we may never know. I for one am sick of that disgusting phony smile that he pulls out since Valerie Jarrett told him to smile more. He looks like the stupid person he really is. Anyone that believes he accomplished what he supposedly did at Harvard is just plain brainwashed. We need to start demanding to know about his past, to understand the present Obama. The Republicans do not deserve the rating they are receiving, because they are only 1/3 of the government and cannot get anywere with the Senate and Obama controlling everything. If they count the Democrat votes more then once then perhaps his 42% approval is a lot less then that!

  15. GreyHawk says:

    All these polls say these things, but these same polled people go out and vote for the idiots that cause all the problems.

  16. Seymour Kleerly says:

    Good for the GOP. ! Now the score is 57-11! (numbers have no real meaning).