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Democrats Brush Off Deficit Fears in Quest to Bolster Safety Net

  • From Joe Biden to Bernie Sanders, big government is back
  • Party driven by voter pressure and anger at GOP contradictions
Senator Elizabeth Warren

Senator Elizabeth Warren

Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

Bill Clinton famously declared in 1996 that “the era of big government is over.” Now, on the Democratic campaign trail, it’s back with a vengeance.

Presidential candidates are replacing their post-Clinton rhetoric of fiscal restraint with a new argument that money is no obstacle to addressing domestic issues like rising inequality and poverty — and they promise to pay for it by taxing the rich, cutting military spending, or borrowing.