Guy Benson
VANCOUVER, WA -- I spent much of yesterday afternoon and evening on the ground in southwest Washington State, home of the 3rd Congressional District and Rep. Brian Baird's (D) open seat.  I'll have an interview with Republican nominee Jaime Herrera on the homepage in the near future, but in the interim, I just can't resist posting an item that local Republicans gleefully fed me regarding Vice President Biden's recent visit to the district on behalf of Democratic candidate Denny Heck:

“The Recovery Act didn’t do enough because we couldn’t spend enough,” Biden told the audience at a Friday morning at a fundraiser for Democrat Denny Heck, who is running for retiring Rep. Brian Baird’s 3rd District House seat in Washington, according to a pool report.

The stimulus, Biden said, “had no material impact on long-term debt. None. Why? Because it ended in two years.”


The Vice President of the United States apparently believes that the Democrat-dominated House of Representatives, the filibuster-proof Democratic Senate, and his own Democratic administration couldn't have spent more on the failed stimulus, but that they should have.  He also seems to think that spending hundreds of billions of unpaid-for dollars had "no material impact on long-term debt."  The CBO, and common sense, disagree:


All told, CBO now anticipates that the law will increase deficits by $862 billion between 2009 and 2019 (see Table A-1).


One wonders if Joe the Strangler would make the same claim about, say, the Iraq War--of which he's been very critical (despite voting for it).  For that matter, would any Democrat say that the war in Iraq had "no material impact on long-term debt"?  By Biden's ludicrous standard, they should:


According to the Congressional Budget Office...the Iraq War cost $709 billion.

The CBO breaks that cost down over the eight calendar years of 2003-2010. Below is a picture of federal deficits over those years with and without Iraq War spending.


So the following are facts, based on the government's own figures.

-Obama's stimulus, passed in his first month in office, will cost more than the entire Iraq War -- more than $100 billion (15%) more.

-Just the first two years of Obama's stimulus cost more than the entire cost of the Iraq War under President Bush, or six years of that war.

Vanity Fair
has dubbed the Vice President's current campaign swing the "Joe Biden's Saying-Questionable-Things Tour."  Suffice it to say, Washington State Republicans I've spoken to would love that tour to make a return visit to their state.  Please, Mr. Vice President, come back and "help" local Democrats by sharing more of your magical math with Washington voters!


Guy Benson

Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Senior Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography