Dick Cheney on Budget & Economy

Vice President of the United States under George W. Bush


Cheney to Treasury: “Deficits don’t matter”

Former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill was told “deficits don’t matter” when he warned of a looming fiscal crisis.

O’Neill, fired in a shakeup of Bush’s economic team in December 2002, raised objections to a new round of tax cuts and said the president balked at his more aggressive plan to combat corporate crime after a string of accounting scandals because of opposition from “the corporate crowd,” a key constituency.

O’Neill said he tried to warn Vice President Dick Cheney that growing budget deficits-expected to top $500 billion this fiscal year alone-posed a threat to the economy. Cheney cut him off. “You know, Paul, Reagan proved deficits don’t matter,” he said, according to excerpts. Cheney continued: “We won the midterms (congressional elections). This is our due.” A month later, Cheney told the Treasury secretary he was fired.

The vice president’s office had no immediate comment, but John Snow, who replaced O’Neill, insisted that deficits “do matter” to the administration.

Source: [X-ref O’Neill] Adam Entous, Reuters, on AOL News , Jan 11, 2004

Tax cuts are crucial to getting recovery underway

The President’s tax policy [has] put money back into the pockets of the people who earn it. We think that’s been vital to avoiding an even deeper recession. We think it’s been crucial, as well, to getting the recovery underway. We’ve been able to cut rates. We’ve been able to reform the double-taxation of dividends and improve the treatment of capital gains, significant expensing for small businesses. That’s where all the jobs get created. Those reforms are key to long-term economic growth.
Source: Speech at Rep. Jim Gerlach luncheon, Malvern PA , Oct 3, 2003

Economy moves forward when Americans have more to invest

When the American people have more to spend, more to save, more to invest, our economy moves forward. And those who need work are more likely to find a job. We expanded the child tax credit from $600 to $1,000. We reduced the marriage penalty. We cut the top rate of taxes on dividends and capital gains. Tax relief is critical to our small businesses. And for the sake of America’s entrepreneurs, farmers and ranchers, we are also bringing the death tax to an end.
Source: Remarks at the National Minority Enterprise Conference , Sep 30, 2003

Increase domestic energy production without damage to land

Q: What is your energy policy?

CHENEY: We are in trouble because the administration has not addressed these issues. We have the prospects of brownouts in California. We have a potential home heating oil crisis in the Northeast. We’ve got gasoline prices rising. For years, the administration has talked about reducing our dependence on foreign sources of oil, but they haven’t done it. We’ve got the lowest rate of domestic production of oil now in 46 years. Our imports are at an all-time

Source: , Oct 5, 2000

In 1980s, US needed limited spending for deficit & Cold War

Defending his votes against social spending, Cheney said he would be able to support more of social spending today, now that the budget deficit has been erased.

Cheney credited Reagan with ending the Cold War, which he said led to the end of deficits. He suggested that Clinton deserves little credit for the good economic times; saying his appointment of Alan Greenspan was his only accomplishment. “I don’t think the economy suddenly turned around when Clinton and Gore arrived in Washington,” he said.

Source: D. Ian Hopper, Associated Press , Jul 26, 2000

Supported Balanced Budget Amendment

Source: (X-ref Education) US News & World Report , Jul 11, 1999

Investment in defense brings economic growth

Today inflation’s so low we rarely talk about it - some 3%. And our workers are still the most productive in the world. American goods and services are competitive around the globe. The US is now the world’s number one exporter with more than $500 billion in exports expected this year. Our economy depends on the peace and security brought by our investment in defense. That investment was modest, even at its peak, and, I might add, worth every penny.
Source: Speech at Lawrence Technical University , Sep 14, 1992

Don’t fund domestic priorities by cutting defense

The defense budget is not a pot of gold. We cannot fix the deficit of fund all of our domestic priorities simply with the response of, take it out of defense. Dismantling our military will not solve our domestic problem, but it will destroy our ability to protect our interest and to shape the direction of world events. To cut defense, we have to do it right, [like] a sweeping restructuring of our armed forces that will reduce defense spending while still preserving the military capabilities we need.
Source: Speech at Lawrence Technical University , Sep 14, 1992

Co-sponsored numerous bills for balancing the budget

Source: Thomas Register of Congressional Votes , Jan 1, 1986

Supported biennial budgeting for deficit reduction

Source: Thomas Register of Congressional Votes , Jan 1, 1986

Voted YES on $40B in reduced federal overall spending.

Vote to pass a bill that reduces federal spending by $40 billion over five years by decreasing the amount of funds spent on Medicaid, Medicare, agriculture, employee pensions, conservation, and student loans. The bill also provides a down-payment toward hurricane recovery and reconstruction costs.
Reference: Work, Marriage, and Family Promotion Reconciliation Act; Bill S. 1932 ; vote number 2005-363 on Dec 21, 2005

  • Click here for 3 older quotations from Dick Cheney on Budget & Economy.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Budget & Economy.
  • Click here for VoteMatch responses by Dick Cheney.
  • Click here for AmericansElect.org quiz by Dick Cheney.
Other past presidents on Budget & Economy: Dick Cheney on other issues:
Former Presidents:
Barack Obama(D,2009-2017)
George W. Bush(R,2001-2009)
Bill Clinton(D,1993-2001)
George Bush Sr.(R,1989-1993)
Ronald Reagan(R,1981-1989)
Jimmy Carter(D,1977-1981)
Gerald Ford(R,1974-1977)
Richard Nixon(R,1969-1974)
Lyndon Johnson(D,1963-1969)
John F. Kennedy(D,1961-1963)
Dwight Eisenhower(R,1953-1961)
Harry S Truman(D,1945-1953)

Past Vice Presidents:
V.P.Joseph Biden
V.P.Dick Cheney
V.P.Al Gore
V.P.Dan Quayle
Sen.Bob Dole

Political Parties:
Republican Party
Democratic Party
Libertarian Party
Green Party
Reform Party
Natural Law Party
Tea Party
Constitution Party
Civil Rights
Foreign Policy
Free Trade
Govt. Reform
Gun Control
Health Care
Homeland Security
Social Security
Tax Reform

Page last updated: Feb 22, 2022