Republicans, including Iowa Senator Charles Grassley, are hailing a new report showing this year’s federal budget deficit is just under three-hundred-billion dollars. Grassley says that’s about 125-billion dollars lower than an estimate released in February.
“I wouldn’t be this bold yet, but some people on (Capitol) Hill are talking about we get into paying down on the national debt in maybe three or four years,” Grassley says. “In 1997 through the year 2000, we paid down $550 billion on the national debt.”
Grassley acknowledges a nearly three-hundred-billion dollar deficit is large, but Grassley says it’s important to compare the deficit to the Gross National Product. The deficit is currently about two-and-a-half percent of the Gross National Product, according to Grassley. He says that’s lower than it was in 1982 under President Reagan or in 1993 under President Clinton.
A report issued this week predicted the deficit will stand at two-hundred-96 billion dollars when the federal budgeting year closes September 30th.