"And that is the rub," Bonner said. "I thought I heard gasps on the House floor when the president claimed his new spending spree would be paid for."
Obama said in his speech that "nothing I'm proposing tonight should increase our deficit by a single dime."
"The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office says it will actually add $1 trillion to the federal deficit. You also promised to cut the deficit in half by the end of your first term. The deficits from 2009 to 2012 were among the highest in U.S. history."
Among other things, Obama encouraged passage of a bill allowing homeowners to refinance their mortgages and called for new spending on education and infrastructure. Obama said the country does not need a bigger government but rather a "smarter government that sets priorities and invests in broad-based growth."
Republicans have argued that Obama has little interest in containing the deficit and the mounting national debt, which has increased by more than $1 trillion per year during Obama's first term.
The Congressional Budget Office projected that the budget deficit for 2013 would be $850 billion. But even that estimate assumes increased federal spending and is conditioned on the collection of an additional $250 billion in taxes that are due in part to a "growing economy."
As of Valentine's Day, the Treasury Department put the total outstanding public debt at $16.54 trillion.