Q: During the Clinton administration was the federal budget balanced? Was the federal deficit erased?<quoted text>
Clinton ran deficits throught all 8 years of his term, and one can go to the US Treasury Department and looking through the history of the total outstanding debt through Clintons term.
Every year Clinton was in office, the total national debt continued to climb.
How Clinton managed to claim a surplus was that while the general operating budgets ran deficits but Clinton borrowed from numerous off budget funds to make the on budget fund a surplus.
For example, in 2000, Clinton claimed a $230B surplus, but Clinton borrowed
$152.3B from Social Security
$30.9B from Civil Service Retirement Fund
$18.5B from Federal Supplementary Medical insurance Trust Fund
$15.0B from Federal Hospital Insurance Trust Fund
$9.0B from the Federal Unemployment Trust Fund
$8.2B from Military Retirement Fund
$3.8B from Transportation Trust Funds
$1.8B from Employee Life Insurance & Retirement fund
$7.0B from others
Total borrowed from off budget funds $246.5B, meaning that his $230B surplus is actually a $16.5B deficit.
($246.5B borrowed -$230B claimed surplus =$16.5B actual deficit).
If there is ever a true surplus, then the national debt will go down.
the national debt did not go down one year during the Clinton administration.
A: Yes to both questions, whether you count Social Security or not.
The Clinton years showed the effects of a large tax increase that Clinton pushed through in his first year, and that Republicans incorrectly claim is the "largest tax increase in history." It fell almost exclusively on upper-income taxpayers. Clinton’s fiscal 1994 budget also contained some spending restraints. An equally if not more powerful influence was the booming economy and huge gains in the stock markets, the so-called dot-com bubble, which brought in hundreds of millions in unanticipated tax revenue from taxes on capital gains and rising salaries.
Clinton’s large budget surpluses also owe much to the Social Security tax on payrolls. Social Security taxes now bring in more than the cost of current benefits, and the "Social Security surplus" makes the total deficit or surplus figures look better than they would if Social Security wasn’t counted. But even if we remove Social Security from the equation, there was a surplus of $1.9 billion in fiscal 1999 and $86.4 billion in fiscal 2000. So any way you count it, the federal budget was balanced and the deficit was erased, if only for a while.