US Democrats 2020 Candidates

In four hours of debate among Democratic contenders for the U.S. presidency, the word “deficit” was never uttered and the government’s debt was mentioned only once. The reality is that Democrats are reluctant to make a campaign issue out of one of America’s most vexing problems — the ballooning annual budget deficits and overall debt under President Donald Trump. That’s because some of their most popular policies going into the 2020 election would present significant budget challenges of their own, including expanding Medicare health coverage and offering government help to cut college costs and reduce student debt. While Democrats insist they have workable plans that will cover the costs of these proposals, Republicans counter that their tax-the-rich solutions are not realistic. On their side of the political divide, Republicans are equally interested in keeping mum on the subject, having happily backed Trump’s massive tax cuts and a surge in military spending – two key drivers of the deficit blow-out – after championing fiscal conservatism for years. By supporting Trump, many Republican lawmakers have essentially abandoned an already fading commitment to balanced budgets and cutting the national debt. “I don’t think in this election cycle there seems to be much of an interest in addressing the issue,” lamented Senator Rob Portman, a former White House budget director. Portman, a Republican, is seen as a hawk on government spending, although he was also a strong defender of the 2017 tax-cut law that will drive up the national debt by at least $1…

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