When Donald Trump was running for president, he told voters he would run the country like he ran his business. Two years later, it’s one of the few promises he’s actually kept. Family members are doing jobs they’re not remotely qualified for. Corruption and self-dealing are a regular feature of life inside the administration. Trump is surrounded not by the “best,” but by the dumbest people. And, like his Taj Mahal casino-along with all the other businesses that ultimately went bust -the nation’s debt is soaring under the genius businessman’s tutelage, a situation that has become significantly more precarious as his pointless shutdown reaches its 19th day.
Shortly after Trump delivered his Oval Office prime-time address on Tuesday, Fitch Ratings’ global head of sovereign ratings, James McCormack, warned that mounting debt is weighing on the U.S. and that the inability to deal with a “meaningful fiscal deterioration” as the shutdown drags on could put our triple-A rating at risk. A credit downgrade-which has only happened once since 1941-would make it more difficult for the U.S. government to borrow money and increase borrowing costs. Speaking at an event in London, McCormack added: “If this shutdown continues to March 1 and the debt ceiling becomes a problem several months later, we may need to start thinking about the policy framework, the inability to pass a budget . . . And whether all of that is consistent with triple-A.” Other victims of the shutdown, of course, include the 800,000 federal employees who are furloughed or working without pay, a situation that has resulted in people skipping medication to pay for food or rent.
As a reminder, during the campaign Trump claimed that he would eliminate the national debt in a period of eight years. Last week, the Treasury Department reported that the national debt had clocked in at $21.974 trillion at the end of 2018, representing a $2 trillion bump since Trump took office. According to the Daily Beast, the president is unconcerned about the U.S.’s financial situation because he “won’t be here” when the shit truly hits the fan.
More Great Stories from Vanity Fair
– The real story behind the Havana embassy sonic “attacks”
– Meet 2019’s political power players
– Is the left lane big enough for both Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren?
– What the left can learn from MAGA
– The pop-culture releases that will save us in 2019
Looking for more? Sign up for our daily Hive newsletter and never miss a story.