March 1st, 2009
11:34 AM ET
13 years ago

'Era of big government' back, Republican says

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Reps. Price and DeFazio sparred over the president's budget Sunday."]

(CNN) - Republican Rep. Tom Price slammed President Barack Obama's budget proposal Sunday, saying it carries too much debt and vastly increases the size of government.

"The era of big government is clearly back," said Price, a Republican from Georgia. "I believe deficits are not acceptable in the level to which this president has put them on the table."

Earlier this week the president unveiled a $3 trillion-plus budget that he says will halve the federal deficit by the end of his first term. Congress received a 140-page summary of the budget for fiscal year 2010 Thursday morning. The full details are expected in April.

Earlier: Obama unveils budget blueprint

But Price, the chair of the Republican Study Committee, a group that looks to advance the conservative agenda for a limited government, said the new budget carries too much debt.

"The budget that he put out there is going to have the largest debt in the history of the nation over the ten-year period of time," Price said. "More debt in this budget than there has been in this nation from 1889 until today. That's not the kind of change that the American people are interested in."

Based on the proposed budget, the administration projects the deficit for fiscal year 2009 will reach $1.75 trillion, or 12.3 percent of U.S. gross domestic product. That's a record in dollar terms and is the highest as a share of GDP since World War II.

But Democratic Rep. Peter DeFazio, also appearing on State of The Union with John King, said the new budget puts the country on the road to fiscal responsibility after excess spending from the Bush Administration.

"President Obama is putting us on a path to restore fiscal responsibility, but he is starting in a big hole," DeFazio said. "So I'm going to work with the president to tighten this budget wherever we can."

Filed under: State of the Union
soundoff (310 Responses)
  1. phil

    Go DeFazio!!

    March 1, 2009 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  2. Lilarose in Bandon, Oregon


    It's OUR MONEY!

    If we want to spend it, we can and we will.

    What is it sitting there for? We need it NOW!

    I am not worried about my gr-gr-gr-gr grandchildren. They will do just fine, thank you!

    March 1, 2009 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  3. Helen

    Mr. Price,

    In case you are having a memory lapse like the rest of your colleagues, It is the Republican party who got us into this mess in the first place. You guys were in power for eight long, hard years and screwed this country left, right and center except for your rich friends. Instead of being negative, the American people would like to at least hear some positive news for a change. President Obama is just being honest when he tells us as it is. Why don't you and your rich party friends come up with some good ideas instead of pulling President Obama down.

    If you don't have any ideas then I suggest you shut up and sit down.

    March 1, 2009 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  4. Ryan

    If republicans believed in less government.. then why'd they create the TSA? Or were they referring to the slip ups on every recall in the past 4 years via the FDA?

    They believe in tax cuts.. but not tax eliminations. SO by that logic, you can still be taxed, except they won't spend that money at all on your community. You pay it and get nothing in return. Yet you can't just..keep it. Because you can't be trusted to invest your own money without their help.

    A sure fire way to have less government would be to fire all the republicans or ask that they resign. But they've never made that offer.. they don't want to quit their jobs...because that would mean, less government...? Idiots.

    March 1, 2009 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  5. johnrj08

    The government got bigger under George Bush than during any previous administration. Where has Price been hibernating?

    March 1, 2009 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  6. Survivor

    No no no no! oops "Oh No!!"

    March 1, 2009 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  7. karkri

    Where did this idiot hide for the past 8 years? The Bush regime has blown away all the surplus we had and put us in this deep hole. Now the repugs are complaining about big govt?

    March 1, 2009 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  8. Richard Frank

    Politicians are bad enough,but what about all of the federal department heads that are busy building their own private versions of Camelot within the government?

    March 1, 2009 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  9. mdc

    The last eight years the republicans spent money on anything they wanted, with absolutely no plan on how to reduce the deficit. At least the current administration acknowledges a debt problem and accounts for it.
    More than the past administration did.
    The current administration is doing something and they want America to succeed, more than I can say for the republican party.
    They should have brought up all these great ideas before we got into this mess.

    March 1, 2009 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  10. kimthejournalist

    Big government is "back"?? What a joke! It never left! Look at Bush's spending and his sneaky backdoor figuring to fund his war, his ridiculous social programs... It never left!

    March 1, 2009 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  11. Independent

    If the era of big government is back what was the Bush Error...I mean era

    March 1, 2009 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  12. JOE

    It wont end until BUSH and CHENEY are in a federal prison... BUSH should have been arrested on January 20, 2009 at 12:01 PM..and CHENEY ate 12:02 PM. for war crimes and crimes against America.

    Republicans HATE AMERICA..

    March 1, 2009 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  13. Ron

    This is to those who think Big Govt is bad. Lack of Govt is what got America in the shape were in now. Big Govt is why America went to war in Iraq.

    March 1, 2009 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  14. JOE

    It wont end until BUSH and CHENEY are in a federal prison... BUSH should have been arrested on January 20, 2009 at 12:01 PM..and CHENEY at 12:02 PM. for war crimes and crimes against America.

    Republicans HATE AMERICA..

    March 1, 2009 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  15. Justin from New Haven, CT

    Bush spent more than the previous 42 Presidents combined. Enough said.

    March 1, 2009 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  16. DWFish

    Republicans are such hypocrites. History has clearly shown how they increase the national debt long-term much more than Democrats, and they increase the scope of government. When a conservative prez is in power, they are happy about this activity. Not so when they lose at the polls, because voters see them for what they are. It's too bad there are so many die-hard Republicans in the country who can't see their party for what it is.

    March 1, 2009 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  17. Jim Q.

    Gosh, the era of big government is back! Somehow didn't notice it had been gone for eight years. Maybe he means, "big, effective government" as opposed to the "big, ineffective government" of the past eight years.

    March 1, 2009 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  18. MaryanneAZ

    The era of honest government budgets and investment in OUR Nation is here. I find it interesting how Repub.licans keep citing what they believe the "American people" want and will support when every single poll, and especially the big one on November 4th, shows the exact opposite facts. If 70% of Americans are standing with this President and his agenda, then what "American people" are the Repub.licans referring to in support of their claims? The American people I know are willing to give honesty, transparency and investment in our Nation and its future a chance.

    March 1, 2009 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  19. arivera

    Era of big government from no government. I'll take the first, at least somebody will be at the helm. Republicans hate government and go out and prove how inept they are at running it.

    March 1, 2009 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  20. AMG

    Republican Rep. Tom Price clearly has not received the message from the American people. We are sick and tired of the Republican Party protecting the super rich in this country.

    I highly recommend that we move the tax structure back to the levels they were in 1944-45. If the republicans would agree to tax those 469 billionaires they helped shelter and create, 94% of income received over $200,000.00, we would easily wipe out our budget deficit and be in surplus again.

    The only reason we are in this mess is because the Republican Party has systematically removed all Federal government oversight, allowing a bunch of predators on Wall Street and Corporate America to destroy the financial stability of this country. We were much better off financially when the Federal government had our back, protecting us from these crooks.

    I now equate the Republican Party as being the creators of the new Robber 'Boomer' Barons.

    March 1, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  21. DA

    I think Responsible Big Government is finally here!!!

    March 1, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  22. Mark Ferbet

    Era of Big Government never left. Republicans would like everyone to believe that they are better than Democrats, and fight for small government, but during the last 14 years, 12 of which were under Republican Congressional leadership, and 8 with a Republican President... they have never shrunk the government.

    They have made it more inefficient. They have outsourced federal jobs to private contractors, and they have wasted a lot of tax payer dollars on no bid contracts, with little to no oversight.

    If that is what shrinking the government is... We don't need that kind of leadership.

    March 1, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  23. punkvoter

    Okay, one of the major (and I believe most important) reasons President Obama's budget "carries too much debt," as Rep. Price puts it is because, unlike what Bush did his entire time as President, Obama has included the costs of both Iraq and Afghanistan. Yes, on the whole, the budget is very large, but that's the price for finally having real transparency in our government.

    March 1, 2009 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  24. therealmarie

    Good long may it live!

    March 1, 2009 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  25. Denisa

    I think it's very funny how the Republicans are just now saying big government is back, I'm confused where was it for the past eight years? Huge as HE$$ and intruding into the personal lives of American citizens. Again, I think they should all shut their mouths tuck tail and run. They screwed it up and won't admit the blatant way they ignored the Bush agenda and went along with his charade.

    March 1, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
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