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David Elbert made the dubious claim that President Herbert Hoover “was a firm believer in balanced budgets” (“Obama’s Situation Looking a Bit Like Hoover’s,” Aug. 7).
But in reality Hoover increased federal spending from $3.1 billion in 1929 to $4.7 billion in 1932, resulting in a budget deficit of $2.7 billion. (Budget figures come from the White House’s website.)
That spending increase did nothing to prevent America from descending into the Great Depression.