Welcome Instapundit readers! Have since tweaked the post a tad to fix a typo I caught in the link!
Today, everyone is all abuzz about Bill Clinton’s speech tonight to the Democratic National Convention. Earlier today Yahoo! led with this image:
The chart below, however, illustrates the real difference between the two Democrats. Reproduced from Table 1.3, one of the many historical tables providing “data on budget receipts, outlays, surpluses or deficits, Federal debt, and Federal employment over an extended time period” on the White House’s website, this shows how federal spending declined as percentage of GDP during Clinton’s tenure in the White House:
I have circled [the column on] the chart showing federal outlays as percentage of GDP over the course of the Clinton presidency. Outlays decline from 21.4% in FY1993 to just 18.2% in FY 2001, the last budget passed by a Republican Congress and signed by the Arkansas Democrat.
For the past two years, that number has been 24.1%, down, to be sure, from FY 2009, a year which included TARP, the “stimulus” and a budget finally passed in the first months of Obama’s term, but up from the last budget passed by a Republican Congress and signed by a Republican president (FY 2007, 19.7%).*
Over at Cato@Liberty, my friend David Boaz reported that Bill Clinton campaigned against big government and embraced “an expanding entrepreneurial economy“.
*Yes, that does indicate that federal outlays grew as a percentage of GDP under George W. Bush; that good man was clearly not a small government conservative.
And do note that federal outlays grew at a far more rapid pace with the election of a Democratic Congress in 2006.