White House Press Secretary Jay Carney


It’s hardly rare for politicians in Washington to say things that make one wonder what color the sky is in their world. Vice President Joe Biden has offered a steady stream of examples, demonstrating again that sometimes an old dog can’t unlearn old tricks. But in the press gaggle yesterday, White House spokesperson Jay Carney dropped a doozy, suggesting anew that the Obama Administration is living in a fantasyland all its own.

Carney broke off answering a question about Baghdad to insert the following: The rate at which spending has increased is lower under President Obama than all of his predecessors since Dwight Eisenhower.

Carney went on to observe that “this President has been—has demonstrated significant fiscal restraint and acted with great fiscal responsibility.”

Well, well, let’s just look at the figures. Federal spending as a share of the economy will average over 24 percent during Obama’s term, and each and every year of that term will see a higher share than during any year since the Second World War. That apparently qualifies as “significant fiscal restraint” Obama-style.

Fiscal responsibility? Obama has had by far the largest budget deficits, driven in large part by the eruption in spending.

It is, of course, the job of the chief White House flak to spin answers in response to questions. But in this case, there was no question. There was only the flak attempting to inject utter nonsense into the national debate. More Kool-Aid, Mr. Carney?