NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

GOP Joins Spending Spree

May 16, 2002

Despite the fact that Republicans control the White House, the House of Representatives and 30 governorships, the nation is now in the midst of the biggest government spending spree since LBJ, critics point out.

  • The domestic social welfare budget has expanded more in just two years ($96 billion) under George W. Bush than in Bill Clinton's first six years in office ($51 billion).
  • The federal budget is up nearly $300 billion in just two years.
  • Over the past year and a half, government spending has grown faster than in construction, services, housing and even consumer spending.
  • In 2001, the private-sector economy grew by a miniscule 0.5 percent, while government spending rose by 6 percent for the year.

Every year since the Republicans first took control of the House in 1995, spending roadblocks have been further removed. Domestic spending actually fell by an impressive 3 percent in real terms in the 104th Congress, in 1995-'96 -- when Republicans seized control of he House and Senate.

The next Congress raised spending by 4 percent, the next by 11 percent and this one is on pace to raise the budget by 15 percent.

Critics point to the Farm Bill as one of the most flagrant examples of government spending run wild - a bill that will distribute million-dollar welfare checks to America's wealthiest farm businesses. Yet two out of three Republicans voted for it, and President Bush signed it.

Source: Stephen Moore (Club for Growth), "And These Are Republicans?" Wall Street Journal, May 16, 2002.


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