Mnuchin blames Democrats in part for deficit

Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinConservatives are outraged that Sarah Bloom Raskin actually believes in capitalism Suspect in Khashoggi murder arrested The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden to tackle omicron risks with new travel rules MORE argued Tuesday that Democrats share responsibility for the recent ballooning of the federal budget deficit.

Mnuchin acknowledged in an interview with Bloomberg that a spending bill passed earlier this year with significant military spending increases played a role in the growing deficit, but suggested the fiscal shortfall was worsened by Democratic demands. 

“In an effort to get the military spending -- which the president thought was critical and which I fully support -- given the issues we have all over the world and the under-investment we have had in the last eight years, this required bipartisan support and the Democrats required big increases in non-military spending,” Mnuchin told the news outlet. “So that’s a major component of deficit today.”


Mnuchin added that President TrumpDonald TrumpJudge rules Alaska governor unlawfully fired lawyer who criticized Trump Giuliani led fake electors plot: CNN Giuliani associate sentenced to a year in prison in campaign finance case MORE is "definitely" focused on getting his Cabinet secretaries to cut back their budgets in an effort to contain the national debt.

Mnuchin's remarks came less than a week after a Treasury Department report showed the U.S. budget deficit climbed to $205 billion in November, up 48 percent from the same month in 2017.

The department projected that the 2019 deficit would surpass $1 trillion and that the U.S. would need to borrow almost $1.2 trillion to pay its bills for the year.

In addition to the February funding bill, which increased federal spending $300 billion over the next two years and raised caps on defense spending, budget agencies have cited the GOP tax cut law as a main driver of the national deficit.

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has projected that the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act would add $1.9 trillion to deficits over a decade.