US National Debt Hits All-Time High Of $32 Trillion

OPINION:  This article contains commentary which may reflect the author’s opinion

The daily update from the Treasury shows that as of June 16, the total amount of the country’s debt reached an all-time high of $32.04 trillion.

This amounts to around $7 trillion in debt between all of the different branches and departments of government and about $25 trillion in debt held by American citizens.

Fewer than two weeks have passed since President Joe Biden enacted the Fiscal Responsibility Act. A clause in the legislation passed on June 3 suspends the debt cap for a period of 19 months, allowing the government to use borrowed money until the end of 2024.

Previously, the debt ceiling was raised to $31.4 trillion in December 2021.

The entire national debt stood at $31.47 trillion on June 3, but the business day after Biden’s signature, federal borrowing rose by almost $400 billion.

The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the federal deficit will be $1.4 trillion in fiscal year 2023.

Although the law Biden signed also includes roughly $1.5 trillion in spending reductions over the following ten years, the gross national debt is anticipated to surpass $50 trillion by 2033 under the administration’s 2024 budget proposal.

That amounts to more than $17 trillion over the following ten years, which is greater than the total amount of the national debt that the general population had as of COVID-19.

On October 2, 2022—just over eight months ago—the federal government passed the $31 trillion threshold.

Because to trillions of dollars in COVID-19-related spending that was authorized by Congress, the $32 trillion milestone was attained nine years earlier than anticipated before the COVID-19 epidemic.

The president of The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, Maya MacGuineas, remarked in a statement: “We can’t even get through a single fiscal year anymore without adding a trillion dollars in debt, and $33 trillion is likely just around the corner.”

“Our debt addiction saddles the next generation with a debt burden that only grows larger so long as we insist on ducking the hard choices of governing.

“We need a return to responsible fiscal policy if we’re ever going to get ourselves out of this mess. The formula to get there should be simple: no new borrowing—meaning fully offset all new spending or tax cuts—and better yet, hold off on them until our debt is under control; address the drivers of our runaway debt; and reform our broken budget process. It’s not rocket science—it’s pretty darn straightforward, and it’s time for our politicians to get to work before it’s too late.”

A little over a week ago, Steve Bannon had a pessimistic forecast for Kevin McCarthy due to his submission to Democrats on the debt ceiling increase.

The Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023, which the Senate voted on on June 1st, was essentially a Democratic measure, according to Bannon’s comments to Newsweek. He cited the 165 House Democrats who supported it and carried it to success, which was hailed by the leadership and President Joe Biden as a win over “extreme voices.”

Only 149 Republicans in the House supported it. The GOP was unsuccessful in obtaining some of its key demands during the final negotiations between Biden and McCarthy, including a lesser-than-desired return of COVID-19 relief funds that were already spent and less strict modifications to the broadened work requirements for Medicaid and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

“I think [McCarthy’s] gonna be gone relatively quickly,” Bannon predicted. “It can’t exist like this. He double-crossed people. He lied to people. He had all these press conferences, ‘We’re gonna hold the line,’ and he was already giving it away.”

The legislation’s restriction on non-defense discretionary spending for the fiscal years 2024 and 2025 accounts for around $1.3 trillion of the savings. The amount spent in 2024 will be almost the same as it is now, and it can only go up by 1% in 2025.

Other accomplishments, such as persuading the Biden administration to divert $20 billion in anticipated funding for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to other non-defense sectors and removing the protracted COVID-era moratorium on student loan repayments, have been hailed by McCarthy as successes.

For Bannon and the House Freedom Caucus, $4 trillion is the most important figure. Irrespective of the “marginal, small cuts” that the top officials of both parties agreed to, he earlier told Newsweek that the agreement will increase the national debt by at least that amount.

McCarthy was outmatched, according to Bannon, by House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, who praised Biden’s leadership for thwarting the “extremism” of the House Republicans during discussions and claimed the final package was a Democratic win.

The number of House Republicans “holding the floor” in the current session is sufficient to prevent McCarthy from even calling procedural votes on proposed legislation that would prevent the outlawing of gas stoves.

“Right now [McCarthy’s] being bled out every day on this, and if these guys seize the floor, they’re not going to give it up,” Bannon added. “This is a forcing function to show that he’s actually in partnership with Hakeem Jeffries—that Hakeem Jeffries is actually the majority leader and not [Republican] Steve Scalise.”


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