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Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Credibility Deficit

Kicking Ass excerpts yesterday's White House briefing:

Q: When the President says that he wants to cut in half the deficit in five years, which budget deficit number is he referring to?

MR. McCLELLAN: Which budget deficit? What do you mean, which?

Q: Which number is he cutting in half, $480 billion, or something that's coming out yet?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, one, the budget is coming out, but I said any way you want to look at it, he has a plan to reduce the deficit in half. And the best way to look at it is to look at it in terms of GDP, and as a percentage of GDP it still remains relatively low by historical standards. But, again, the President has a plan to cut the deficit in half over the next five years and that's what we intend to do.

Q: But if the number, again, is not $480 billion, the projected amount, but it's going to be the number that will be coming out in the--

MR. McCLELLAN: We'll get you--I'll double-check the number for you, but it's cutting in half--

Q: I just want to know--

MR. McCLELLAN: --yes, I'll double-check that number for you.