October 28, 1998

Closing The Books On A Generation Of Deficits. In 1993, President Clinton put in place a three-part economic strategy to: (1) cut the deficit, help reduce interest rates, and spur business investment; (2) invest in education, health care, and technology so that America was prepared to meet the challenges of the 21st Century; and (3) open markets abroad so that American workers would have a fair chance to compete and win across the globe. Today, America's fiscal house is in order. After three decades of budget deficits, fiscal year 1998 was the first year the United States government recorded a budget surplus since 1969:

Expanding Critical Investments While Maintaining Fiscal Discipline. President Clinton's 1993 Economic Plan included $255 billion in spending cuts over five years -- more than half of the total deficit reduction package. As a result, federal spending as a share of the economy had declined for each of the past six years and is now the lowest in 24 years. As spending has been cut in lower priority areas, President Clinton has dramatically increased funding in critical areas, such as education and training, children, the environment, health care, and research and development.

Providing Tax Relief For America's Middle Class. Even as the President was working to reduce the deficit, tax cuts he signed into law have lowered the federal tax burden on the typical American family of four to its lowest point since 1976. The President proposed to build on these tax cuts through additional, fully-paid for, tax relief for child care, education, pensions, affordable housing, and the environment.

We Have Fixed The Fiscal Deficit, Now We Must Fix The Generational Deficit. In his State of the Union speech, President Clinton called for reserving the budget surplus until Social Security was reformed for the 21st Century. The President is determined to seize this unique opportunity to strengthen this important program for generations to come. Protecting the surplus is a key step towards enacting Social Security reform, President Clinton has already fought against efforts to drain the surplus, and today, it remains intact.

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