President Obama’s Uniparty Slush Fund-Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
Most Americans don’t know that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, aka the Stimulus Package, has renewed $1 trillion in federal spending in each of the last eight years, creating a “Uniparty Slush Fund” for President Obama.
Claims that the Stimulus Package has quietly authored $1 trillion in federal spending in each of President Obama’s eight years in office, creating a Uniparty Slush Fund, are false.
The rumor appears to have started with an article appearing at the Conservative Treehouse blog site under the headline, “Most Americans Don’t Know About President Obama’s UniParty Slush Fund.”
The article first details how President-elect Donald Trump will be able to reverse Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DREAM Act and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) executive actions without the help of Congress. Then, it makes a series of false claims about the Stimulus Package to support the idea that Obama has had access to a little-known Uniparty Slush Fund for the last eight years:
In February 2009 congress passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, or ARRA, commonly referred to as Obama’s stimulus plan. The stimulus was just shy of one trillion ($986 billion +/-).
At the time of passage this single stimulus expenditure reflected a growth of approximately 20% in total federal spending. The spending went directly into the deficit.
Approximately 30% of that “one time” trillion dollar stimulus was spent in 2009, the remaining 70% was spent in 2010. (*note fiscal years run from October 1st to September 3oth annually).
However, absent a federal budget -and because of baseline budgeting- it became a repeated expenditure in each of the following fiscal years.
The $1 Trillion Stimulus was spent eight more times.
The idea that $1 trillion in stimulus spending became “a repeated expenditure in each of the following eight years” because of the absence of a new federal budget and baseline budgeting practices is completely false. The measure gave the federal government “budget authority” to spend a given amount of money for certain purposes, according to laws passed by Congress. The measure was not passed as part of the federal budget, and it does not “renew” with continuing resolutions passed by Congress.
The ARRA legislative package outlined nearly $1 trillion in direct spending in infrastructure, education, healthcare, energy, tax incentives and social welfare programs as part of that budget authority. The stimulus package included a detailed accounting of one-time investments to be made in those specific areas, and various online databases feature dime-for-dime accountings of where stimulus spending went.
Besides that, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) is required to report on the impact of Stimulus Package spending each year, and part of that accounting is a review of the total cost of the measure. In its most recent report, the CBO found that the Stimulus Package would increase budget deficits a total of $840 billion between fiscal years 2009 and 2019:
When ARRA was being considered, the Congressional Budget Office and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation estimated that it would increase budget deficits by $787 billion between fiscal years 2009 and 2019. CBO now estimates that the total impact over the 2009– 2019 period will amount to nearly $840 billion. By CBO’s estimate, close to half of that impact occurred in fiscal year 2010, and more than 95 percent of ARRA’s budgetary impact was realized by the end of December 2014.
If, as the UniParty Slush Fund claim suggests, the Stimulus Package renewed $1 trillion in federal investments every single year, the economic impact of the bill would be far greater than $840 billion over a 10-year period.
So, claims that President Obama has a UniParty Slush Fund, and that the Stimulus Package renews each year, are false.