Ronald Reagan was a big spender: Spending during Reagan’s two terms (FY 1981-88) averaged 22.4% GDP, well above the 20.6% GDP average from 1971 to 2009.
Ronald Reagan did not care about the debt: The public debt rose from $712 billion in 1980 to $2,052 billion in 1988, a roughly three-fold increase.
Ronald Reagan raised taxes: Reagan hiked taxes many times and instituted new taxes. He increased taxes about a dozen times when confronted with surging deficits.
Under Ronald Reagan’s watch, U.S. moved from the world’s largest international creditor to the world’s largest debtor nation.