Sunday, June 13, 2004

Fiscal Rectitude, Bush Style

How can anyone read this post by Tyler Cowen and claim with a straight face that Bush is in any way a heir to Reaganite fiscal conservatism?

President and Term, Number of Budget Cuts [referring to department or agency; see the last link in this post for further explanation of the data. I've done minor editing and added the boldface]

Johnson, 4 out 15
Nixon, 3 out 15
Carter, 5 out 15
Reagan 1, 8 out 15
Reagan 2, 10 out 15
Bush, George H., 2 out 15
Clinton 1, 9 out 15
Clinton 2, 0 out 15
Bush, George W., 0 out 15
While we're at it, note the record for Clinton's second term in office. Democrats who want to make the argument that Clinton's fiscal restraint was anything other than an external imposition are going to have their work cut out for them. The real credit for the improved budgetary situation in the 1990s ought to go to Newt Gingrich and company.