American Crossroads Falsely Blames Sen. Murray For The Debt In New Attack

September 30, 2010 10:19 am ET

American Crossroads has released a new attack ad against Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), attempting to blame her for the size of the debt and accusing her of wanting to raise taxes. In reality, annual deficits exploded because of Bush-era policies, including tax breaks for the rich that Murray opposed. Furthermore, the Democratic tax plan would extend tax cuts for about 97 percent of Americans, while saving the country $700 billion by ending giveaways for millionaires.

American Crossroads: "What Difference"

When Patty Murray first ran for Senate she promised to tackle big problems.  So what difference has Patty Murray made after 18 years in Washington, DC?  She's increased our national debt by trillions and now she wants to raise taxes to help pay for it.  We just can't afford six more years of Patty Murray. 

GOP Policies — Not Patty Murray — Blew Up Annual Deficits

Before Obama Took Office, The FY 2009 Deficit Was Projected At $1.2 Trillion.  As reported by the Washington Times: "The Congressional Budget Office announced a projected fiscal 2009 deficit of $1.2 trillion even if Congress doesn't enact any new programs. [...] About the only person who was silent on the deficit projection was Mr. Bush, who took office facing a surplus but who saw spending balloon and the country notch the highest deficits on record." [Washington Times, 1/8/09, emphasis added]

CBPP: "Tax Cuts Have Been The Single Largest Contributor To The Reemergence Of Substantial Budget Deficits In Recent Years." According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities: "Congressional Budget Office data show that the tax cuts have been the single largest contributor to the reemergence of substantial budget deficits in recent years.  Legislation enacted since 2001 added about $3.0 trillion to deficits between 2001 and 2007, with nearly half of this deterioration in the budget due to the tax cuts (about a third was due to increases in security spending, and about a sixth to increases in domestic spending)." [CBPP, 5/9/08, parentheses original]

The Bush Tax Cuts Are The Primary Driver Of Federal Budget Deficits Over The Next Decade. Below is a chart from CBPP showing the deficit impacts of war spending, financial recovery spending, the recession itself, and the Bush tax cuts:

[, 6/28/10]

  • Sen. Murray Opposed The 2003 Bush Tax Cuts. Sen. Murray voted against the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act, which passed 50-50 with Vice President Dick Cheney casting the tie-breaking vote. [H.R. 2, Vote #196, 5/23/03]

Most Americans Would See Continued Tax Relief Under The Democratic Plan...

Reuters: "Two To Three Percent Of Americans" Are Affected By Democrats' Proposals. According to Reuters: "Lawmakers are mulling the renewal of tax cuts enacted in 2001 and 2003 under former president George W. Bush that expire at the end of this year. President Barack Obama and his Democratic allies in Congress want to extend the lower rates for individuals earning less than $200,000 or couples making less than $250,000. About two to three percent of Americans fit into the upper income categories." [Reuters7/21/10]

...And Ending Tax Breaks For The Rich Will Save $700 Billion

New York Times: Extending Tax Cuts For The Rich Would Cost $700 Billion. According to the New York Times: "Most of the tax cuts that were a signature domestic initiative of George W. Bush's presidency carried an expiration date of Dec. 31, 2010, to limit the potential revenue losses; supporters assumed that they would be extended when the time came. Extending them for the next 10 years would add about $3.8 trillion to a growing national debt that is already the largest since World War II. About $700 billion of that reflects the projected costs of tax cuts for those in the top 2 percent of income-earners." [New York Times, 8/10/10]