With debt mounting, new US president to face tough choices

WASHINGTON, October 28, 2008 (AFP) – The next US president will inherit a mountain of debt from the latest government bailouts, making it difficult to implement new programs promised during the campaign, analysts say.

The government closed its books on the 2008 fiscal year September 30 with a record deficit of 455 billion dollars, and many private analysts say the current fiscal year in which Barack Obama or John McCain will be elected will end with a gap of one trillion dollars.

“The budget deficit is easily going to double and there is not going to be the kind of room to accommodate all the promises the candidates have made,” said Maya MacGuineas, head of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a nonpartisan fiscal watchdog group.

The campaign pledges of the two candidates could make these deficits even bigger, according to MacGuineas and other budget analysts.

A report by the committee suggested tax cuts promised McCain could add 414 billion to 482 billion dollars to the deficit and Obama’s tax plans could cost some 360 billion. These would only partly be offset by savings from other areas, according to the analysis.

“I don’t think either one of them has been realistic about the budg