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Federal Spending – Fast Facts

All fast facts for Federal Spending are from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform (NCFRR), and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO). They do not represent all of their reports on this subject. Some simply provide historical context. Occasionally minor word adjustments may have been made for clarity or to reflect the updated nature of the statement. As always, verify and view statements in their full context as often as possible.

Before the Budget Control Act of 2011 was enacted, the final appropriations in the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act (PL 112-10) had reduced funding for 2011 relative to the temporary funding CBO used as the basis for constructing its previous baseline. As compared with that baseline, P.L. 112-10 reduced discretionary budget authority for 2011 by $23 billion.    Click here to verify at Page 64
The 1980s began with substantial momentum in the growth of Federal nondefense spending in the areas of human resources, grants to states and local governments, and, as a result the deficits incurred throughout the 1970s, interest on the public debt…a combination of substantially increased defense spending, continued growth in human resource spending, large tax cuts, and a deep recession caused deficits to soar. Federal spending climbed to an average of 22.8 percent of GDP during 1981-1985. An end to the rapid defense buildup and a partial reversal of the tax cuts, along with a strong economy during the second half of the decade, brought Federal spending back down to 21.2 percent of GDP by 1989.   Click here to verify at Page 8 - – – Or use URL; www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/budget/fy2012/assets/hist.pdf
Subsequent to the enactment of income tax legislation in 1913, these taxes grew in importance as a source of Federal receipts during the following decade. By 1930, the Federal Government was relying on income taxes for 60 percent of its receipts, while customs duties and excise taxes each accounted for 15 percent of the receipts.  Click here to verify at Page 6 - Or use URL; www.gpoaccess.gov/usbudget/fy10/pdf/hist.pdf
Last year (1995)… the Congress adopted a historic budget resolution recommending a balanced budget by fiscal year 2002.  It then proceeded, without inordinate delay, to develop and approve reconciliation legislation, appropriation measures, welfare reform legislation, and other landmark measures that were consistent with the resolution and that the Congressional Budget Office projected would achieve the resolution’s balanced budget goal.  Click here to verify
The (1995) Congress is on a similar budgetary track this year: it has approved another balanced budget resolution and is proceeding with appropriation and reconciliation measures to carry it out.  Thus, using existing procedures, the Congress has been able to accomplish the most fundamental and perhaps the most important function of the budget process—to establish and enforce a comprehensive budget plan for the federal government.  Click here to verify at Page 2
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Voting Key


Fact = 100% - 92% True
Mostly Fact = 91% - 75% True
Slightly Fact = 74% - 60% True
Split = 59% - 50% True
Slightly Fiction = 49% - 30% True
Mostly Fiction = 29% - 10% True
Fiction = 9% - 0% True