Questioning American Spending in Ukraine? Put it in Perspective.

$20 Billion: The U.S. commitment of military aid to Ukraine under President Biden “to help Ukraine preserve its territorial integrity, secure its borders, and improve interoperability with NATO.” 

Source: Washington Post, Nov. 27, 2022

$942.6 – $960.4 Billion: What Americans are expected to spend this 2022 holiday season (excluding auto dealers, gas stations and restaurant purchases)

Source: National Retail Federation

$768 Billion: The amount the U.S. spent on national defense activities in FY2022.

Source: Congressional Budget Office

$420 Billion: Amount of the federal budget that provided benefits to veterans and former career employees of the federal government, both civilian and military, in FY2022, which ended on Sept. 30, 2022. 

Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

$399 Billion: Total interest payments the federal government made on the money it borrowed to finance the net federal debt in FY2022.

Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

$220 Billion: What Qatar has spent on the World Cup.

Source: Forbes

$80 Billion: Money allocated to the Internal Revenue Service under the Inflation Reduction Act to enhance its operations.

Source: Forbes

$36 Billion: Biden payout to the underfunded union-run Central States Pension Fund to shore up more than 200 distressed plans; approved as part of a stimulus bill intended to reduce economic damage from the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Source: Wall Street Journal

$18.9 Billion: Money appropriated in FY2022 for 5,138 Congressional earmarks, up from $15.9 billion in FY2021.

Source: 2022 Congressional Pig Book, Citizens Against Government Waste

UPDATE: Who knew what is really in the bill. A new analysis said there are more than 7,200 earmarks totaling $15 billion from lawmakers in both parties sneaking their way into the final legislative text  of the $1.7 trillion bill, a 4,155 page conglomeration of major spending and minutiae. There’s no shortage of seemingly random pet projects—$3.6 million for a Georgia hiking trail named after Michelle Obama, $150,000 for sidewalk repairs in a small Maine town.

Sources: OpenSecrets  New York Times

$4.8 Billion: The amount candidates, party committees, leadership PACs and joint fundraising committees spent on the 2022 midterm elections as of Oct. 19, 2022.  Campaigns spent almost $1 billion on digital ads alone.

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