The Truth-O-Meter Says:

To give the proposed economic stimulus plan some perspective, "if you started the day Jesus Christ was born and spent $1 million every day since then, you still wouldn’t have spent $1 trillion."

Mitch McConnell on Sunday, February 1st, 2009 in appearance on CBS's "Face the Nation"

Stimulus plan comes to more than a million bucks a day since Jesus Christ was born

In a CBS Face the Nation interview on Feb. 1, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell , R-Ky, sought to put the proposed economic stimulus bill into some sobering perspective.

"You know, this is huge money," McConnell said. "This is — someone said the other day that, if you started the day Jesus Christ was born and spent $1 million every day since then, you still wouldn’t have spent $1 trillion.”

The bill isn't that expensive yet — the House version is estimated at $819 billion — but the Senate is expected to add new programs and additional tax cuts that could increase the cost significantly. Both chambers are expected to keep the total pricetag under $1 trillion.

We'll save you from counting zeros on your online calculator and give you our quick and dirty assessment of whether his analogy is right.

First, a starting point. Biblical scholars may quibble about the actual birth date of Jesus Christ, but we're going to go with the fairly commonly accepted theory that it was around 4 B.C. That's right, it would mean Christ was actually born "Before Christ."

Add that to Anno Domini time, and you come to 2012 years since the birth of Christ.

So here goes our math: 2,012 times 365 (yes, we are aware there are leap years ... don't be like that) times $1,000,000. A: $734 billion (give or take a few hundred million).

The stimulus package is actually short of $1 trillion too, $819 billion. But that's still more than a million bucks a day since the day Jesus was born. We find McConnell's staggering stat to be True.

About this statement:

Published: Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009 at 4:17 p.m.

Subjects: Economy, Stimulus


CQ Politics, "Noted and Quoted," Feb. 1, 2009

Bible Studies at the Moorings, The date of Christ's birth

Written by: Robert Farley
Researched by: Joseph Lewis
Edited by: Bill Adair

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