On July 25, The Advocate published a letter from U.S. Rep. Jeff Landry, R-New Iberia, in which he accused President Barack Obama of being untruthful, and then proceeded to spout one untruth and exaggeration after another.

One example from Landry’s letter: “In his first year in office alone, Obama tripled the national deficit.” It’s unclear to me whether the congressman was referring to the national debt or the annual budget deficit, but it doesn’t really matter. In either case, his statement would be far from the truth.

What he’s actually doing is repeating a two-year-old Republican talking point that’s been called a “Texas-size whopper” by Factcheck.org.

See http://www.factcheck.org/2010/02/a-texas-size-whopper/

According to the Congressional Budget Office, on the day of Obama’s inauguration, America’s debt stood at approximately $10.6 trillion. If Landry’s statement were true, the debt today would be around $32 trillion.

If Landry was referring to the annual budget deficit, according to a CBO report released on Jan. 7, 2009 (two weeks before Obama took office), the budget then had an annual deficit of $1.2 trillion. A year later, in February 2010, the Obama administration unveiled it’s first budget, which included deficit spending at around $1.55 trillion.

Too high? No doubt! But “tripled”? Really?

It’s too bad Landry wasn’t around in 2009 when Congress was debating health-care reform.

We all would have enjoyed reading his ominous warnings about those “senior citizen death panels.”

Keith Saucier

project manager