It also led to this blog posting by Rep. Jim Renacci, the Republican incumbent facing Democratic incumbent Rep. Betty Sutton in Ohio’s newly redrawn 16th congressional district:
“In less than one term, (Obama has) racked up more debt than any president in history — over $5 trillion.”
The statement interested PolitiFact Ohio because it was less sweeping and more specific than many others.
Responding to our inquiry, Renacci’s staff cited a CBS News story from March, which compared the debt growth under Obama’s three years and two months in office to eight years under George W. Bush.
On Jan. 20, 2009, the date Obama took office, the debt stood at $10.6 trillion. At the time of the CBS story, it had increased by $4.9 trillion.
By the day Renacci’s statement was posted, the Treasury Department’s online “Debt to the Penny” calculator showed the debt at more than $15.7 trillion — an increase of $5.1 trillion.
During the two terms of the Bush presidency, whose debt exceeded all predecessors, the debt rose $4.899 trillion.
So Renacci’s numbers checked out.