Next up is health-care reform. Obama passed it; Republicans want to repeal it "lock, stock, and barrel." The reason, as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell explained in July, is that "we all know that it's going to increase the deficit." Unfortunately for the GOP, though, nonpartisan experts tend to disagree. Just this Tuesday, for example, the CBO released a letter saying that Obama's health-care-reform legislation would "reduce the projected budget deficit by $30 billion over the next 10 years,” while repealing the law would generate "an increase in deficits ... of $455 billion ... over that [same] period." Factor those figures into the equation and the Obama deficit falls to $784 billion. The GOP deficit, meanwhile, rises to $455 billion. Getting warmer.
The final piece of the puzzle is the Bush tax cuts. Obama wants to extend them for the 95 percent of taxpayers making less than $250,000 a year; Republicans want to extend them for everybody. How will these extensions affect the deficit? Glad you asked. According to data compiled by The Washington Post, "the Democratic proposal would add about $3 trillion to the deficit during the next decade, while the GOP plan would cost $3.7 trillion." That brings the total Obama deficit to $3.784 trillion over 10 years, and its GOP counterpart to—drumroll, please—$4.155 trillion.