“We borrow $4 billion every single day…”

Claim: “We borrow $4 billion every single day…”

Ad(s): At Stake

Sponsor(s): American Crossroads

Air Dates:  October 24-November 6

Total Estimated Spending On This Claim:  $1,723,185 ($3,446,370 total)

States: Florida, New Hampshire, Ohio and Virginia, West Virginia, Nevada, Iowa, Colorado, Arizona

Markets: Tuscon, Colorado Springs, Denver, Orlando, Tampa, Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Des Moines, Ottumwa, Quincy, Rochester, Boston, Burlington, Portland, Las Vegas, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton, Lima, Parkersburg, Toledo, Wheeling-Steubenville, Youngstown, Zanesville,   Charlottesville, Norfolk, Richmond, Roanoke, Tri-Cities, Washington D.C., Charleston, Erie, West Palm Beach

Stations:  KWBA, KKTV, KOAA, KRDO, KXRM, KCNC, KDVR, KMGH, KTVD, KWGN, WESH, WFTV, WKCF, WKMG, WOFL, WRDQ, WFLA, WFTS, WMOR, WTOG, WTSP, WTTA, WTVT, WWSB, KCRG, KFXA, KGAN, KWWL , KLJB, KWQC, WHBF, WQAD, KCCI, KDSM, WHO, WOI, KTVO, KYOU, CGEM, KHQA, WEM, KAAL, KTTC, KXLT, WBZ, WCVB, WFXT, WHDH, WLVI, WSBK, WCAX, WFFF, WPTZ, WVNY, WCSH, WGME, WMTW, WPFO, KLAS, KSNV, KTNV, KTUD, KVCW, KVMY, KVVU, WCPO, WKRC, WLWT, WXIX, WBNX, WEWS, WJW, WKYC, WOIO, WUAB, WBNS, WCMH, WSYX, WTTE, WDTN, WHIO, WKEF, WRGT, ELIO, EOHL, WLIO, WOHL, WTAP, WNWO, WTOL, WTVG, WUPW, WTOV, WTRF, WFMJ, WKBN, WYTV, WHIZ, WAHU, WCAV, WVAW, WVIR, WAVY, WGNT, WTKR, WTVZ, WVBT, WVEC, WRIC, WRLH, WTVR, WWBT, WDBJ,WFXR, WSET, WSLS, WCYB, WJHL, WKPT, WDCA, WDCW, WJLA, WRC, WTTG, WUSA, WCHS, WOWK, WVAH

 

Politifact  Summary: The federal government doesn’t literally borrow money every day, but through periodic bond auctions. So we assumed the ad used an average. Here’s one way to do the math on $4 billion a day. The total federal debt on the day the ad was released, according to the Treasury Department, was $16.2 trillion. On the day Obama took office, it was $10.6 trillion. That’s a gain of $5.6 trillion – about $4 billion a day. There are a few nits to pick with this math. First, we’re not currently borrowing that much. Over the last year, the average has been about $3.4 billion a day, not $4 billion. Second, that’s using a measure of the entire federal debt – including the big chunk we owe ourselves that’s held by government accounts such as the Social Security and Medicare trust funds. “Debt held by the public” is the amount the federal government has actually borrowed to finance deficits. And the amount added to the public debt since Obama took office averages about $3.7 billion a day, not $4 billion.

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