McCrery, Pomeroy Announce Effort to Improve SSDI Program

    Congress is Back in Session, Briefly

    CRFB Analyzes CBO’s Updated Budget, Economic Forecast

    The Cost of Delay on Social Security

McCrery, Pomeroy Announce Effort to Improve SSDI Program
Former Congressmen Jim McCrery (R-LA) and Earl Pomeroy (D-ND) launched the McCrery-Pomeroy SSDI Solutions Iniatitive, a bipartisan effort to identify potential improvements to the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program. The goal of the initiative is to provide policymakers with options to improve the SSDI program in advance of the its 2016 projected insolvency date.  
Congress is Back in Session, Briefly

 Congress has several impending fiscal speed bumps to navigate, including avoiding a government shutdown on Sept. 30. The House will vote soon on a continuing resolution to fund the government beyond that date. Read Appropriations 101 to learn the basics about the appropriations process. Our blog, Appropriations Watch: FY2015, has the latest updates.  

 

CRFB Analyzes CBO’s Updated Budget, Economic Forecast

 CRFB published a new 6-page paper summarizing CBO’s latest Budget and Economic Outlook. CBO estimates that federal debt will fall slightly to below 73 percent by 2018 but, beyond that, debt levels will resume their upward trend, reaching 77.2 percent of GDP in 2024. This growing debt is largely the result of a projected rise in spending levels not matched by equivalent increases in revenue.   

 

 The Cost of Delay on Social Security

 

Social Security is on a path to insolvency and unable to pay full benefits by 2033. A solution is achievable, but becomes much more expensive if our leaders in Washington procrastinate. Waiting until 2033 will increase the size of the required benefit cuts or tax increases by 50 percent. Read more here or try "The Reformer" to create your own plan for closing the shortfall.

  

CRFB's Blog: The Bottom Line

The resolution setting next year's budget continues this year's levels of war spending, despite the fact that the federal government was supposed to spend much less after reducing troop levels in Afghanistan. It contains war spending at an annualized level $26 billion higher than requested by the President. Even if some funds are spent on operations against the Islamic State terrorist group, billions are still being appropriated above what is needed for overseas operations without a clear purpose.

A new paper suggests that tax cuts that add to the deficit provide little boost to economic growth, and may actually hinder it. Last week, the Tax Policy Center (TPC) put out a paper entitled “Effects of Income Tax Changes on Economic Growth,” summarizing the academic literature.  According to the authors Bill Gale from Brookings and Andrew Samwick from Dartmouth, the net economic impact of a deficit-financed income tax cut is either small or negative. The negative effects of additional debt crowds out the economic benefit of lower rates.

In a commentary published today in Roll Call, former Congressmen Jim McCrery (R-LA) and Earl Pomeroy (D-ND) argue Congress should take a closer look at Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).

As they explain, the looming 2016 deadline, when the program’s trust fund is projected to become insolvent and result in an immediate across-the-board cut in benefits, will force Congressional action. Given the importance of the SSDI program, they worry about the dangers of waiting until the last minute. They are calling for a constructive debate on SSDI well in advance of the insolvency date, saying "if policymakers wait until the last minute to start cobbling together solutions, they could make things far worse."

Retirement saving  was the topic of discussion at a Senate Finance Committee hearing yesterday, as five witnesses representing a variety of perspectives gave their thoughts on ways to improve savings incentives and policies. The witnesses were:

  • John Bogle, Founder and former CEO of Vanguard
  • Brian Reid, Chief Economist of the Investment Company Institute
  • Scott Betts, Senior Vice President of the National Benefit Services
  • Brigitte Madrian, Aetna Professor of Public Policy and Corporate Management at the Kennedy School at Harvard University
  • Andrew Biggs, Resident Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute
 
June 4, 2013
CRFB's latest interactive tool "The Reformer" is a handy game that allows users to design their own Social Security plan. Users can select from a wide variety of benefit and revenue changes to make the system sustainably solvent. The tool then shows the effect on the program's finances and benefit and tax levels.
September 27, 2011
If you've ever wanted to design your own corporate tax reform, now you can with our new Interactive Tax Reform Calculator. There is no question that the U.S. corporate tax system is badly in need of reform, and leaders in both parties have been pursuing this goal.

CRFB Projects

The Campaign to Fix the Debt is an unprecedented and bipartisan coalition that seeks to mobilize members of business, government, and policy communities to urge Congress and the President to enact a comprehensive debt deal.

The Moment of Truth (MOT) project is a non-profit, non-partisan effort that seeks to foster honest discussion about the nation’s fiscal challenges, the difficult choices that must be made to solve them, and the potential for bipartisan compromise that can move the debate forward and set our country on a sustainable path.