That’s the question IBD’s John Merline is asking:
Perhaps the best metric is Obama’s own promises about what his economic plan would produce. Those are contained in his first budget, which was issued in early 2009.
Above are charts comparing that budget’s forecasts for key economic indicators with what actually happened.
The results are startling. The economy did far worse than Obama thought it would on every important measure.
The problem here is that federal spending from 2010 to 2013 was almost exactly where Obama pegged it in his first budget, and it’s much higher as a share of GDP. Deficits were also far higher than Obama expected.
From a standard Keynesian perspective, these should have provided additional stimulus to the economy — above what Obama initially forecast.
Merline concludes the problem lies with the Democrats’ 2009-2011 legislative agenda, and I’m inclined to agree 100%.