WASHINGTON – A centrist budget-watchdog group is punching trillion-dollar holes in the claims of Republican presidential candidates that they would rein in the mounting federal debt if elected, according to an analysis to be released on Thursday.
The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a group of former members of Congress, former administration officials, budget experts and business leaders of both parties, analyzed each candidate’s agenda under three scenarios – most optimistic, intermediate and most pessimistic, depending on the specificity of the candidates’ proposals. It found that all four men remaining in the Republican race would increase annual budget deficits beyond what is currently projected, under at least one of the scenarios studied.
Here are the projections for public debt under various proposals. Realistic baseline represents the CRFB's estimate of the debt trajectory.
So according to CRFB, only Paul and Obama have offered proposals that are projected to actually reduce public debt. Romney increases the debt, but does no worse than the current realistic trajectory of increase. On the other hand, Gingrich and Santorum are poster boys for out-of-control debt.
But many conservative voters prefer smoke, mirrors and the pompous blather of so-called fiscally responsible, conservative candidates.