How Our Nations Debt Doubled During Obama’s Presidency

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In 2008 when President Obama took office in January 2009 the National Debt was at $10.6 trillion dollars, as of now the national debt is $19.96 trillion dollars. Speculation is that when Obama leaves the White House on January 20th the debt will reach over $20 trillion dollars.

What is important to understand is that national debt cannot solely be based on President Obama as many of the decisions about spending are decided buy the United States Congress.


Congress is responsible for making spending decisions on tax and government spending. Both sides of congress (republican and democrat) played a big hand in increasing the debt as they either proposed legislation that increased debt or faili to create legislation that would decrease debt.

How Obama Was Involved

President Obama did however sign certain legislations that made the debt worse. The earliest in his presidency would be the 2009 Stimulus Package that was enacted to counteract the effects on corporations during the great recession. Obama also extended tax cuts from 2001/2002 (making some permanent in 2012), as well as the tax extenders/ominous bill.

Obama was also responsible for the Budget Control Act which increases the debt ceiling $2.8 trillion dollars but is intended to reduce the deficit by $2.3 trillion dollars over the next ten years.

Who is to Blame?

Altogether it can be argued that both Obama and Congress are to blame for the increase in debt. However, it is important to note that when Obama took office the Great Recession had just begun and was always guaranteed to increase the debt tremendously.

It is of note however that the above listed legislations were written by congress and not Obama who merely enacts them. This makes blame not so black and white as one could say ‘Obama should’ve vetoed these acts until ‘better’ processes were thought of.’ Or one could say that ‘congress is not to blame as they were not guided by the president into a more effective legislative plan.’

Factors such as these (as well as inflation) are largely to blame. So, while the debt has nearly doubled since he took office, it is not solely on Obama’s shoulders for causing the increase to happen. 

The size of government is the main culprit. Not once in Obamas 8 years was their ever a year they came close to even balancing the budget. The government spent on average, greater than $1 Trillion more, each year, than they took in. That happened because the government is just too darn big.

We advocate for a small limited government that don't spend and inflate us to death. Where lobbyists wouldn't really exist because a limited government can't sway regulations in their favor.


  • SamuelCop

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