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Longest Budget Delay of Any Incumbent President in History

Posted: March 5, 2013 at 5:00 pm   /   by

American families have to do a budget every year, a responsibility they have no choice but to take seriously.  Not so with the current White House.  For the fourth time in five years, President Obama has proven he doesn’t take trillion-dollar deficits seriously enough to submit a budget on time.  That’s a smack in the face to the millions of Americans who are struggling to make ends meet in the president’s economy and to pay the higher tax bills the president demanded they pay.

Under the law, the president must submit his budget request no later than the first Monday of February.  Last month, the Obama Administration announced that for the fourth time in five years it would fail to meet this deadline.  In fact, The Hill has reported President Obama will not submit a budget until March 25, which would amount to the longest budget delay of any incumbent president in the 90-year history of presidential budgets. (for more check out this chronological review of presidential budget submissions)

Courtesy of the House Budget Committee, here are some facts about President Obama’s abysmal budget record:

  • In just one term, President Obama has missed the budget deadline more than any other president;
  • This year, his budget will likely be submitted after the longest budget delay of any incumbent president in history;
  • In the 90 years covering FY 1923 through FY 2013, President Obama is the only president to miss the deadline two years in a row.  He is the only president who has missed the deadline in four of the five years of a term.  And, he holds the record for the longest delay (at 98 days);
  • All presidents from Harding through Reagan’s first term met the statutory budget submission deadline in every year. In five of these years, a change in the law was requested and passed to extend the deadline, and the president always met it;
  • Since the budget process moved the date of submission to the first Monday in February, the incoming president’s first budget submission has been delayed for practical reasons (the President’s inauguration is less than three weeks before the budget submission’s deadline). Yet President Obama’s first budget set a new record with a 98-day delay; and
  • Since the statutory deadline was extended to the first Monday in February, with the exception of the first budget for a new president, this deadline has only been missed three times: Clinton FY 1998, Obama FY 2012, and Obama FY 2013.

In the coming weeks, House Republicans will advance a balanced budget that would promote robust economic growth and create millions of American jobs.  The GOP plan, which will balance in 10 years, will (1) stop spending money we don’t have by cutting wasteful spending; (2) fix our broken tax code to create jobs and increase wages; (3) protect and strengthen important priorities like Medicare and national security; and (4) repair the safety net and expand opportunity to all Americans.  Every family must balance its budget.  Washington should too, and it’s time for President Obama and Senate Democrats to embrace this common-sense goal.

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Longest Budget Delay of Any Incumbent President in History