Obama's Track Record - By the Numbers

Is it good or bad? Americans will decide on November 6th.

Last year I described a general strategy for defeating the president in the next election (see "How to Defeat Obama in 2012"). Key to this was forcing the president to run on his record which can hardly be considered stellar. As the campaign unfolds, Republican contenders have somehow forgotten this and are content to snipe at each other instead. In the meantime, the president revels in the GOP squabbling as he remains out of the limelight and has even gone so far as to tout his record as president.

I do not believe the president has anything to brag about though and his record has to be brought back into perspective. To do so, I researched the data from several key areas and compared the president's record thus far to his predecessor, George W. Bush, who Obama openly vilified during his campaign as the cause of the country's woes. Keep in mind, the data contained herein contains Mr. Bush's full eight year term of office, while Mr. Obama's reflects no more than two or three years of service.


Bush (8 years): 3.8% low to 7.3% high
Obama (3 years): 7.8% low to 10.1% high (currently annual average is 8.9%)
Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics

"Back in early January, when Barack Obama was still President-elect, two of his chief economic advisers (Christina Romer and Jared Bernstein) — leading proponents of a stimulus bill — predicted that the passage of a large economic-aid package would boost the economy and keep the unemployment rate below 8%. It hasn't quite worked out that way."
- Stephen Gandel, TIME Magazine, July 14, 2009

Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

Bush (8 years): $9.9T to $14.3T
Obama (3 years): $13.9T to $14.5T (as of 2010)
Source: Measuring Worth

"Like it or not, we have to have a financial system that is healthy and functioning."
- President Barack Obama, February 3, 2010

Government Revenues (including taxes)

Bush (8 years): $3.6T to $4.7T
Obama (3 years): $3.6T to $4.8T ($5.25T projected for 2012)
Source: USGovernmentRevenue.com

"We've got to make sure that people who have more money help the people who have less money."
- candidate Barack Obama, November 2007


Bush (8 years): $3.24T to $5.34T
Obama (3 years): $5.94T to $6.05T ($6.22T projected for 2012)
Source: USGovernmentSpending.com

"Now, what that would require would be some shared sacrifice and a balanced approach that says we're going to make significant cuts in domestic spending. And I have already said I am willing to take down domestic spending to the lowest percentage of our overall economy since Dwight Eisenhower."
- President Barack Obama, July 15th, 2011

Federal Deficit

Bush (8 years): $-236.2B to $458.5B
Obama (3 years): $-1.4T to $1.2T ($1.1T projected for 2012)
Source: USGovernmentSpending.com

"When we continue to spend as if deficits don’t matter, that means our kids and our grandkids may windup saddled with debt that they’ll never be able to repay."
- President Barack Obama, July 22nd, 2010

Federal Debt

Bush (8 years): rose from $5.6T to $9.9T
Obama (3 years): rose from $11.8T to $15.1T ($16.65T projected for 2012)
Source: USGovernmentRevenue.com

"The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can't pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies... Leadership means that 'the buck stops here.' Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better. I therefore intend to oppose the effort to increase America’s debt limit."
- Senator Barack Obama, March 20th, 2006

Federal Government size (employees)

Bush (8 years): 4.1M to 4.2M
Obama (3 years): 4.4M (data available through 2010 only)
Source: U.S. Office of Personnel Management

"Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told the House Small Business Committee on Wednesday, June 29, 2011 that the Obama administration believes taxes on small business must increase so the administration does not have to "shrink the overall size of government programs."
- The Family Foundation, June 2011

When you factor in the enormous potential economic impact of Obamacare, assuming it survives the Supreme Court, the failed stimulus packages and bailouts, the additional bureaucracy of his czars and other questionable appointments, etc., you have to wonder what the president has to crow about.

Not surprising, the media seems to be more than willing to divert the public's attention from the president's record to the foibles of the GOP candidates. I realize Americans have short attention spans, but surely they cannot believe things are any better today than three short years ago when he took the reins.

"YES WE CAN!" - Obama's 2008 campaign slogan. Did they? The American voters will decide on November 6th.

Register to vote.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Copyright © 2012 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Torrey Craig January 13, 2012 at 10:01 PM
Tim - Anne The debt ceiling move, which no matter which of the spectrum you are on, will in the end be passed with much ,, what? What might be the word? The reason that it will be passed is failure is unacceptable. Unfortunately we seemingly continue to see the same old ... same old coming from Washington. I would suggest that the amount of revenue the federal government brings in is not much more than it did in 2000 and 2001. Those where balanced budgets. Bring spending to those levels. There would be a slight surplus which would be used to pay off the debt.
Anne Onomous January 14, 2012 at 03:10 AM
Torrey - The KEY phrase in your response is "bring spending to those levels". That is the basis for a successful budget.... be they business or household. The difference is our leaders are mortgaging our futures for political aspirations while risking our financial solvency and overall national security. This combined with rampant fraud in the system is a recipe for disaster.
rick barasso January 14, 2012 at 03:57 AM
Let us not forget the corporate welfare.....
JaaaaaaayBeeeeeeeeee January 14, 2012 at 02:07 PM
Bank bailout passed by Bush as he is walking out the door .... huge banks like Bank of America and BB&T don't pay a PENNY in taxes ... banks don't lift a finger to pass along any benefit of the bailout to the folks that the money came from in the first place .... all this goes onto Obama's budget. The man is hardly a failure .... Bush inherited a budget SURPLUS, and managed to crash the country ... way to go! The candidates nominated by the Republican Party amaze me with their utter lack of intellect. Bush only graduated due to favors called in by his grand-daddy. McCain ... second to LAST in a class of 498! I want to see school records on future candidates from both parties. I voted for the guy with the 140+ IQ.
Anne Onomous January 15, 2012 at 01:56 AM
Let's face it..... the 2000 Election left a LOT to be desired on either side. Al Gore? Oh please..... LOL! As far as bank regulation, etc..... PERHAPS the Democratic controlled Congress the first 2 years of Barry's term should have ALSO concentrated on that instead of solely on the healthcare program. We can point fingers all day. The fact is the leadership of this country is a miserable failure....be it in the Executive OR legislative branch....and regardless of party.


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