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Government & Politics

Portman Says CBO Report Underestimates Growth that Will Keep Debt from Hitting Historic Highs

Congressional Budget Office charts
The Congressional Budget Office project ongoing and accelerating deficit spending.

Ohio Sen. Rob Portman – a deficit hawk during the Obama administration – says a new Congressional Budget Office report underestimates economic growth and overestimates the national debt over the next 30 years. 

Portman says economic growth has well outstripped the projections from as little as six months ago, and he’s confident that will continue if GOP tax cuts become permanent. If that happens, Portman says he doesn’t buy Congressional Budget Office projections that the national debt will hit historically high levels by 2028.

“That somehow we’re just going to go right back to where we had been, at 1.9 percent, which is was the average growth rate during the Obama years, I don’t think that’s the new normal. I think we can keep the growth rate higher than that.”

Portman says most of the temporary tax cuts passed in other administrations have become permanent. And while he remains concerned about deficit spending, economic growth this year has benefitted programs like food stamps and Social Security Disability.

If the Budget Office projection is right, the ratio of debt to national gross domestic product at the end of this year will be the highest since 1950.