When Fox News' lied about the 2009 budget deficits as being Obama fault, even the Cato Institute couldn't keep silent.
Here's what Fox originally said:
Of course that's patently false.
President Obama has shattered the budget record for first-year presidents — spending nearly double what his predecessor did when he came into office and far exceeding the first-year tabs for any other U.S. president in history. In fiscal 2009 the federal government spent $3.52 trillion …That fiscal year covered the last three-and-a-half months of George W. Bush’s term and the first eight-and-a-half months of Obama’s.
When Mr. Obama was sworn into office the federal deficit for this year stood at $422 billion. At the end of October, it stood at $1.42 trillion.
Here's what Daniel J. Mitchell of Cato wrote in order to set the record straight (via Mario Piperni):
I’m a big fan of criticizing Obama’s profligacy, but it is inaccurate and/or dishonest to blame him for Bush’s mistakes. At the risk of repeating my earlier post, the 2009 fiscal year began on October 1, 2008, and the vast majority of the spending for that year was the result of Bush Administration policies. Yes, Obama did add to the waste with the so-called stimulus, the omnibus appropriation, the CHIP bill, and the cash-for-clunkers nonsense, but as the chart illustrates, these boondoggles only amounted to just a tiny percentage of the FY2009 total — about $140 billion out of a $3.5 trillion budget.
So if we do the math, President Obama is responsible for 4% of the 2009 federal budget. The other 96% is Bush’s handiwork. How strange that Fox did not mention any of that. It was left to the Cato Institute to set the record straight.