OTTAWA, ON: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation today marked the sombre milestone of reaching $1 trillion in federal debt by bringing its National Debt Clock in front of Parliament Hill in Ottawa.
“The Trudeau government broke our National Debt Clock by running the debt beyond $1,000,000,000,000,” said CTF Federal Director Aaron Wudrick. “Our National Debt Clock no longer has enough digits to display the size of our federal debt, because nobody ever dreamed the debt would grow this big.”
The National Debt Clock was built in the 1990s to push back against runaway deficits and debt. It was retired when Paul Martin balanced the federal budget in 1998, but went back on tour when the Harper government plunged the country into deficit in 2009.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a sharp temporary spending increase, the Trudeau government was racking up debt well before the pandemic and has stated it plans to pile up even more after the pandemic ends.
“This government cannot blame the pandemic for the fact it broke its own promise to balance the budget and racked up more than $100 billion in additional debt during its first four years in office,” said Wudrick. “Nor can it justify $100 billion more in debt-financed spending in coming years, especially since it doesn’t even know what it’s spending it on.”
The federal debt is currently increasing by over $10,000 per second, $43 million per hour or $1 billion every day. Each Canadian’s individual share of the federal debt is over $26,000.
“Debt is often treated as if it is irrelevant because it goes unseen, which is why we built the giant National Debt Clock to make it more visible to politicians and Canadians,” said Wudrick. “Tens of billions of dollars spent on interest every year means less money for things Canadians actually value and less money in our own pockets.”
The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is calling on the Trudeau government to lay out a plan in the next federal budget to reduce spending and chart a path back towards a balanced budget.
“We are in a deep hole and the first step needs to be to stop digging it deeper,” said Wudrick. “The government can do that by finding lower priority areas where it can save, ensuring temporary programs are wound down, and plotting a course back to balance.”
To see a video of the Debt Clock crossing over the $1 trillion mark, click HERE