A Republican Congressman this week compared the country’s debt to the United States’ history of slavery.
In an interview with the conservative magazine Newsmax, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) also equated excessive government spending and abortion, both of which he considers among the “most horrendous things this country has done”:
“Slavery and abortion are the two most horrendous things this country has done but when you think about the immorality of wild, lavish spending on our generation and forcing future generations to do without essentials just so we can live lavishly now, it’s pretty immoral.”
The debt that has become the absolute focus of Washington is actually not nearly as big a problem as Republicans make it out to be. Government expenditures have grown at its slowest pace since the Eisenhower administration under President Obama and the latest projections from the Congressional Budget Office show that the nation’s deficits have shrunk by trillions of dollars, and the debt is close to being stabilized as a percentage of the economy. Certainly, it is nothing like the black mark of slavery on our nation’s history.
And even if Gohmert truly believes that the debt is such a vital issue of morality for the country, his party’s method of trying to reduce it — forcing austerity through spending cuts — is not the right solution. Drastic spending cuts will actually lead to greater debt, as evidenced by European austerity measures. Investment in the economy through additional spending coupled with higher revenues will help lower deficits for those future generations about which Gohmert is so seriously concerned.