“Unlike in past years, there really is no discussion of the budget at all. The debt … [there’s] not even an acknowledgment that it’s a problem,” said Robert Bixby, executive director of the Concord Coalition, a fiscal watchdog group.
Mr. Bixby pointed out that the deficit was a huge issue in the 1992 and 1996 presidential campaigns and that George W. Bush battled with Al Gore and Mr. Gore’s “lockbox” in 2000 over how to preserve a now-unthinkable federal budget surplus.
“Its salience on the political agenda is way down,” he said. “No matter who becomes the next president, the current incumbent or whoever, [they’re] going to have to deal with a deficit over a trillion dollars and rising, and they’re not talking about that at all.”