Sen. Ernst: ‘Absolutely,’ $28.4 Trillion Debt is ‘Too Much’

By Ashlianna Kreiner | August 12, 2021 | 3:30pm EDT
Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa)   (Getty Images)
Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) (Getty Images)

(CNS News) – When asked if the $28.4 trillion federal debt was too much, Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) said, “Yes, it is too much. It’s frightening.”

At the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday, CNS News asked the senator, “The debt of the federal government is now 28.4 trillion. Is that too much?”

Sen. Ernst said: “Absolutely, it is too much. So we need to stop spending and, I’ve used this line before, I’ll use it again, only in Washington D.C. is it ‘okay’ to throw around a word like a trillion. And we really have to pay attention. We’re saddling future generations with debt upon debt upon debt. So it’s got to come to an end.”

CNS News asked the follow-up question: “And are there any government programs you’re interested in eliminating to reduce the federal spending?”

The senator replied, “I think all we can do is look through some of these recent bills and see the expansion of federal government spending. We need to stop all of that.”

According to the U.S. Treasury Department, the total public debt outstanding as of Aug. 9, 2021, was $28,427,651,083,061.54, or roughly $28.4 trillion.

The federal debt did not surpass $1 trillion until fiscal 1982. That fiscal year, according to the Treasury, the debt started at $997,855,000,000 and ended at $1,142,034,000,000.

Over the last 39 years, the debt has ballooned, from $1.1 trillion to $28.4 trillion. The federal debt did not surpass $1 trillion until fiscal 1982. That fiscal year, according to the Treasury, the debt started at $997,855,000,000 and ended at $1,142,034,000,000.

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Over the last 39 years, the debt has ballooned, from $1.1 trillion to $28.4 trillion. In the 1994 Contract With America, conservative Republicans called for eliminating the Department of Commerce, Department of Energy, Department of Education, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. 

In the federal government, in addition to the legislative, judicial, and executive branches, there are 15 departments, such as Defense, HHS, Commerce, and Education. Also, there are approximately 453 agencies

According to The Hill, “The federal government employs nearly 9.1 million workers, comprising nearly 6 percent of total employment in the United States. The figure includes nearly 2.1 million federal employees, 4.1 million contract employees, 1.2 million grant employees, 1.3 million active duty military personnel, and more than 500,000 postal service employees.” 

Transcript

CNSNews.com: “The debt of the federal government is now $28.4 trillion. Is that too much?”

Sen. Ernst: “Absolutely, it is too much. So we need to stop spending, and I’ve used this line before, I’ll use it again, only in Washington D.C. is it ‘okay’ to throw around a word like a trillion. And we really have to pay attention. We’re saddling future generations with debt upon debt upon debt. So it’s got to come to an end.”

CNSNews.com: “And are there any government programs you’re interested in eliminating to reduce the federal spending?”

Sen. Ernst: “I think all we can do is look through some of these recent bills and see the expansion of federal government spending. We need to stop all of that.

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