The federal government is now $13 trillion in the red, the Treasury Department reported Wednesday, marking the first time the government has sunk that far into debt and putting a sharp point on the spending debate on Capitol Hill.
Calculated down to the exact penny, the debt totaled $13,050,826,460,886.97 as of Tuesday, leaping nearly $60 billion since Friday, the previous day for which figures were released.
At $13 trillion, that figure has risen by $2.4 trillion in about 500 days since President Obama took office, or an average of $4.9 billion a day. That’s almost three times the daily average of $1.7 billion under the previous administration, and led Republicans on Wednesday to place blame squarely at the feet of Mr. Obama and his fellow Democrats.
“A $13 trillion debt is an alarm bell and a wake-up call combined, but Democrats are not even trying to pass a budget,” said House Minority Leader John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican. “How out of touch can Washington Democrats get? Instead of continuing to pay lip service to this issue, President Obama should call on congressional Democrats to pass a budget that provides the fiscal discipline economists say is needed to create jobs and grow our economy.”
The White House would not comment for the record, but an official speaking on the condition of anonymity said the administration is “committed to restoring fiscal responsibility.”
Spokesmen for the Democratic chairmen of the House and Senate budget committees didn’t return messages Wednesday.