President Joe Biden has issued 99 executive orders since taking office in 2021. Former President Donald Trump, by way of comparison, signed 220 EOs throughout his entire four-year term. Biden’s EOs to-date will reportedly cost taxpayers an estimated $1.5 trillion.
The president’s unilateral ambitions are regarded by some experts as particularly costly, especially with the national debt on course to hit $31 trillion later this month and with the rate of inflation north of 8.3%.
The Heritage Foundation’s Matthew Dickerson told Fox News Digital that Biden has already “cost taxpayers more than $1 trillion so far.”
That figure may be a conservative estimate, suggested Dickerson, granted that an analysis conducted by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) indicated “that less than ten of Biden’s earlier executive actions cost taxpayers already more than $500 billion.”
Rep. Jason Smith (R-Mo.) stated on July 13 that in 16 months, Biden “charged American taxpayers $532 billion — all with no input from the American people themselves or a vote by their elected representatives in Congress.”
When Democrat bills failed, such as the budget reconciliation bill that would expand ObamaCare, “Biden, with the stroke of a pen, did so via executive fiat, proposing $34 billion be added to the taxpayers’ tab.”
In another instance, Biden signed away Trump’s public charge rule, enabling illegal aliens to acquire additional welfare dollars and benefits. This, according to the CBO, will cost taxpayers $20 billion.
A major contributor to the $1.5 trillion figure is Biden’s student loan handout — the legality of which is in contention — with $10,000 in debt forgiveness promised to each borrower with an income under $125,000 or $20,00 to those with Pell Grants.
The Penn Wharton Budget Model puts the cost of this debt cancellation at around $519 billion over the planned ten-year budget window.
Loan forbearance and the new income-driven repayment program will cost another $16 billion and $70 billion respectively. Altogether, with additional unforeseen costs likely to be tacked on, the total plan may cost over $1 trillion.
A National Taxpayers Union Foundation estimate puts the cost to taxpayers of Biden’s student debt forgiveness at around $400 billion. Although considerably less than some other estimates, this would still mean an increase in the average burden per U.S. taxpayer of $2,503.22.
The White House suggested that the yearly cost of Biden’s student loan program would only be $24 billion a year over a ten-year span.
Dickerson pointed out that the cost of Biden’s spending “by fiat” will be borne out also in inflationary forces.
The spending on executive actions such as student forgiveness “means more money getting pumped out into the economy that’s being financed by the Federal Reserve, which means the printing presses are on, which means that it adds to inflationary pressures.”
Biden’s actions and the inflation they have wrought are “exacerbating the 3.3 million worker shortage that we see in the economy,” said Dickerson, largely by expanding “the welfare state” and paying “people to stay out of the workforce.”
Within hours of taking power, Biden signed 17 executive orders, including orders to preserve DACA, revoke the March 2019 permit for the Keystone XL Pipeline (ahead of the energy crisis), rejoin the U.S. to the Paris climate accord, and to halt America’s withdrawal from the World Health Organization.
DACA’s preservation will prove costly, granted the Federation for American Immigration Reform’s estimate that each illegal alien costs taxpayers $9,232 per year and there are approximately 611,000 DACA recipients.
As for Biden’s EO rejoining the U.S. to the Paris climate accord, a 2019 Heritage Foundation estimate put the cost of participation at an aggregate GDP loss of over $2.5 trillion and a total income loss of more than $20,000 for a family of four.
The U.S., which spends approximately $3.3 billion on the United Nations a year, funds the WHO to the tune of $127 million a year, while also reportedly making voluntary contributions. Maintaining support will not be cheap.
Some of Biden’s other orders include:
- “Protecting Access to Reproductive Healthcare Services,” which will both “protect and expand access to abortion care, including medication abortion” and promote awareness about abortion services;
- “Catalyzing Clean Energy Industries and Jobs Through Federal Sustainability,” which will achieve through regulation, subsidy and other statist means “a carbon pollution-free electricity sector by 2035 and net-zero emissions economy-wide by no later than 2050”;
- “Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility in the Federal Workforce,” setting DIE as a priority for his administration and “establishing additional procedures to advance these priorities across the Federal workforce”;
- “Establishment of the Climate Change Support Office,” to increase “international climate ambition, and ensuring that climate change is integrated into all elements of United States foreign policy decision processes”;
- “Guaranteeing an Educational Environment Free From Discrimination on the Basis of Sex, Including Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity,” highlighting a prohibition of discrimination of students “on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity”; and
- “Establishment of the White House Gender Policy Council,” establishing a council to “advance gender equity and equality” in the federal workforce and Military.
Several of Biden’s EOs were revocations of Trump’s executive orders, such as:
- “Promoting Beautiful Federal Architecture,” ensuring that all federal building designs command respect of the general public and visually embody America’s ideals;
- “Ensuring Democratic Accountability in Agency Rulemaking,” permitting only senior federal appointees to initiate the rulemaking process for agency rules;
- “Reducing Poverty in America by Promoting Opportunity and Economic Mobility,” reforming the welfare system;
- “Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs,” requiring the elimination of two prior regulations for every new regulation issued;
- “Building and Rebuilding Monuments to American Heroes,” which would honor historical figures such as Amelia Earhart, Benjamin Franklin, and Jackie Robinson in a federal garden;
- “Preventing Online Censorship,” directing the U.S. Attorney General to consider enforcing states’ laws seeking to ban censorship; and
- “Protecting American Monuments, Memorials, and Statues and Combating Recent Criminal Violence,” directing agencies to prosecute iconoclasts.
Some revocations will prove costly. According to Smith, the “Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs” EO issued by Trump, had “reduced the direct cost of regulatory compliance by $50 billion” and was “projected to reduce costs by an additional $50 billion in FY 2020.”
Reporting from The Blaze.