The Bottom Line

January 27, 2011

Continuing our "Spotlight on the States" series, which takes a look at state-level fiscal issues around the country, the Bottom Line turns to the state of Illinois.

January 27, 2011

In what is sure to be a wake-up call for the Japanese government, Standard & Poor’s cut Japan’s credit rating today for the first time in nine years. Japan, whose credit rating was downgraded from AA to AA-, faces a debt of 943 trillion yen ($11 trillion) - more than double of their annual economic output.

January 27, 2011

Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND), chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, is calling for swift and decisive action to address our worsening fiscal problems. His comments come in reaction to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) January 2011 baseline report, which was released yesterday. To see CRFB's analysis of the new baseline, click here.

January 27, 2011

Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) released his plan for cutting federal spending earlier this week in the latest in a wave of Republican spending cut proposals, joining plans released in the last week from Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) and the House Republican Study Committee.

January 26, 2011

CBO today released its new budget and economic update, showing higher ten-year deficit and debt projections from 2012 to 2021 than they predicted back in August. The 2011 deficit is projected to be the highest in history (in nominal dollars), $1.48 trillion, while the ten-year deficit is close to $7 trillion, up by about $725 billion from where it was in August.

January 26, 2011

Congressional leaders have agreed to reappoint Doug Elmendorf as the director of the Congressional Budget Office. Mr. Elmendorf, who has been the director of CBO since 2009, was officially reappointed to the position today by Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) and the Senate President Pro Tempore Senator Daniel Inouye (D-HI).

January 26, 2011

Today, the House voted to end public financing of political party conventions and presidential campaigns by a vote of 239-160. This is part of a continuing effort on the part of House leadership to make good on their pledge to vote on weekly bills that promote spending restraint.

January 26, 2011

Last night in his State of the Union address, President Obama hailed a new era of bipartisan cooperation, focusing on America's competitiveness to "win the future." He focused on the need to invest in innovation, education, infrastructure, as well as getting out from under our "mountain of debt." We released a statement last night giving our initial reaction to his proposals.

January 26, 2011

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) has released her proposal to reign in federal spending, amounting to over $425 billion in cuts annually.

January 25, 2011

Beginning at 9pm, President Obama will address the nation in second annual State of the Union address to Congress and the American public.

CRFB will be live tweeting the event on Twitter (@Budgethawks), providing insight into any statements on spending, revenues, deficits, and debt. We hope there will be many.

Also, be sure to check back to CRFB after the address as we will be posting a brief release on our take on the speech.

January 25, 2011

UPDATE: Debt-O terms that were not used in tonight's State of the Union address - Tax Reform, Entitlements, Tax Expenditure, Fiscal Plan, Revenue, Retirement Age, GDP, and Recovery - we hope you still won!

Looking for a way to make watching tonight's State of the Union address more fun?

Try Fiscal SOTU Bingo! We'd like to call it...Debt-O. Click here to download ten DEBT-O boards for you and nine of your friends to play during the President's State of the Union address.

January 25, 2011

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) released its World Economic Outlook update today, on the eve of two big moments for U.S.

January 25, 2011

The House of Representatives this afternoon passed a rule directing Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), the chairman of the House Budget Committee, to set non-security spending at 2008 levels for the rest of fiscal year 2011. This level is consistent what the new House leadership promised in their "Pledge to America." Rep.

January 25, 2011

 In her latest commentary for CNN Money, CRFB president Maya MacGuineas talks about the need for President Obama to focus on large and specific proposals to fix our budget in tonight's State of the Union.

Find out if he heeds her advice by following CRFB's live tweets (@BudgetHawks) tonight during the speech!

 

January 24, 2011

While all eyes (for now) are on the President's State of the Union address tomorrow night, the true test of President Obama's fiscal priorities will come in the FY 2012 President's Budget. Hopefully, we'll get a peek in his speech tomorrow night about what will be included in the FY 2012 budget. Today, CRFB released a statement of what we would like to see in that budget in order to put our country back on a sustainable fiscal path.

January 24, 2011

What Will He Say? – On Tuesday President Obama will avail himself of one of the most effective tools a President has to shape the Washington agenda and the political narrative – the annual State of the Union address.

January 21, 2011

Last month, we reported the positive developments that were happening with the major players--GM, Citigroup, and AIG--still left in the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). In November, Citigroup had fully repaid all the assistance it had received in various TARP programs, GM had significantly reduced Treasury's ownership stake in itself, and AIG was in the process of an exit plan.

January 21, 2011

 

 

Speaking today on the House floor, Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) gave a speech expressing his growing concern about our national deficit and debt. He also took the bold step of stating that he would not vote for an increase in the U.S. debt limit if Congress didn't make a serious commitment to getting our country back on a sustainable fiscal path, saying:

January 21, 2011

Yesterday, the organization Third Way released a plan outlining several Social Security reform proposals meant to ensure the program's solvency over the next 75 years. The plan, called Saving Social Security, makes several fundamental changes to the program and cuts $2 in benefits for every $1 it increases taxes.

January 21, 2011

With so much talk currently about the statutory debt ceiling, we at CRFB felt that this topic, which can be quite complex, deserved a good briefing. We have thus updated our Debt Celing Primer as an educational tool. With the debt ceiling debate about to reach full force as we get closer to reaching the limit, an explanation of what the debt ceiling truly is can be helpful.

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