Democrats, and Obama in particular, are once again reviving the dishonest meme of the destruction that has supposedly occurred over the “last decade” at the hands of the Republican Party. They conveniently ignore that the GOP hasn’t controlled Congress for “the last decade.” Democrats took back the House in 2006. They’ve controlled the federal legislature for four years now, and much of the decline has occurred on their watch. Granted, they couldn’t have done nearly as much damage with out a complicit President Bush who rubber-stamped increasingly statist programs and even advocated some of his own, but he could not have done so without legislation to sign, legislation that was provided by the Democrats in Congress. If we look at Congressional control and by extension, spending control, the Democrats’ campaign catch-phrase shatters under its own weight.
In January 1995, when the GOP took Congress after the ’94 midterm elections, unemployment was at 6.2%. By Jan 2001, the unemployment rate had fallen to 4.7%. When the GOP lost the House in November 2006, unemployment was at 4.3%. It rose slightly during the transition, and when Democrats took over in January 2007, unemployment was a whopping 5%. Under Democrat control, the unemployment rate has essentially doubled, and is now at 9.6%.
In January 1995, when the GOP took Congress, the DOW Jones Industrial Average opened at 3882.21. By January 2001, during Republican control, the DOW had grown to 10,581.90. In 2007, when the Democrats regained control, they “inherited” a DOW at 12,566.33, more than three times larger than it was when the GOP started their tenure. Under Democrat control, the DOW fell to a low of about 8000, and currently rests around 10,400, more than 2000 points lower than what the Democrats “inherited.” The Democrats managed to unravel six years of growth in just four years.
Of the most recent ten years of deficit data currently available (2000-2009) the GOP was in control for six, and the Democrats for three. Under GOP control, the deficit averaged 164.3 billion annually. Under Democrat control, the budget deficit jumped to 677.6 billion annually. Based on current projections, this average will jump to over 800 billion annually when the 2010 deficit is announced. Based on that projection, the average federal deficit under Democrat control will be greater than the entire cost of the Iraq war.