The Bottom Line

January 21, 2011

In a recently published article in The Fiscal Times, CRFB board member Eugene Steuerle analyzes the current debate over health-care in Washington. Mr. Steurle argues that the yes-no, all-or-nothing mentality of Congress oversimplifies the issue and fails to address the real questions that need to be asked about our health-care system. Mr.

January 20, 2011
US bond markets were driven by reduced EU sovereign debt fears, signs of stronger US growth

Over the past week, interest rates on the benchmark 10 year Treasury bond rose. Key drivers were: less safe haven demand for US government instruments (a “flight to quality” typically pushes down interest rates) and increased demand for US government instruments with higher yields, based on signs that the US economy is continuing to recover.

January 20, 2011

Today, the House Ways and Means Committee held its first hearing on tax-reform of the 112th Congress. Several witnesses testified at the meeting, which aimed to examine the complexity and inefficiency of the US tax code. More specifically, the committee discussed the burden it places on American families, the need for a more competitive corporate rate, and the code’s failure to stimulate the economy and create jobs.

January 20, 2011

Today the Republican Study Committee (RSC), the caucus of conservatives in the House of Representatives, announced their proposal for reducing our budget deficits. The plan was introduced by RSC Chairman Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) and leader of the RSC's Budget and Spending Taskforce, Rep. Scott Garrett (R-NJ).

January 19, 2011

How do you want Washington to get our country's fiscal house in order?

CRFB's Fiscal Roadmap Project has just launched a new "Voices of America" video contest that will let you submit your own view about our fiscal problems and how you would solve them. With a $14 trillion debt and red ink as far as the eye can see, we want to hear from you on this important issue.

January 19, 2011

While we are keenly aware that the "F" in CRFB stands for "Federal", it is difficult to ignore the budget plight of the states.

January 19, 2011

OMB recently released an annual report on PAYGO, showing the budgetary impacts of PAYGO legislation, current policy exemptions, and exemptions for emergency legislation. The report details the budgetary impact of all legislation passed since February 12, 2010, when the PAYGO law was enacted.

January 18, 2011

Can Dreams of Cooperation be Fulfilled? – Yesterday the nation celebrated the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. His vision of unity and reconciliation will be needed as a divided Washington takes on many contentious issues, such as health care repeal and several budget-related issues.

January 18, 2011

In her latest commentary on CNN Money, CRFB President Maya MacGuineas discusses the ugly facts about our national debt. If Congress and the president fail to make the necessary changes in current policy, our nation will experience some sort of a fiscal crisis.

My Views" are works published by members of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, but they do not necessarily reflect the views of all members of the Committee.

January 18, 2011

Dr. Christina Romer, the former chairwoman of the President's Council of Economic Advisors, published an article in the New York Times this weekend calling for President Obama to use his January 25th State of the Union address as a means to outline a credible plan to lower future budget deficits.

Dr. Romer, who left the administration last August, is calling for the deficit to be given significant focus.

January 18, 2011

With much of Washington talking about how to address our fiscal situation, more specific budget areas are coming into focus. One area that some are holding as sacrosanct from any spending cuts is the defense budget.

January 14, 2011

Today, Vice President Joe Biden announced that Bruce Reed will be his next chief of staff. Bruce served as Executive Director of the President's Fiscal Commission which issued its final recommendations in December. He previously served as the top domestic policy advisor in the Clinton Administration.

January 13, 2011

The independent, non-partisan policy group Taxpayers for Common Sense (TCS) released their recommendations for how to reduce the deficit. They identify $148 billion in savings over the next five years, with savings coming from spending cuts and reductions in tax expenditures.

January 12, 2011

Economist Barry Eichengreen warned the U.S. over at VoxEU about the consequences of "economic mismanagement"--essentially, not taking steps to address the budget gap. Focusing on the international economy and the role of the dollar, Eichengreen says that a fiscal crisis in the U.S. would make the dollar "tank" and that "the impact on the international system would not be pretty." Here's what he had to say:

January 12, 2011

Congressman Kevin Brady (R-TX) has introduced legislation called the Cut Unsustainable and Top-Heavy Spending (CUTS) Act of 2011. It includes numerous cuts recommended by the President's Fiscal Commission as well as terminations requested by both the Bush and Obama administrations. All told, this bill includes over $40 billion in single-year cuts and $150 billion in deficit reduction over five years.

January 12, 2011

As a member of the awards committee for the Fiscys, we have been taking some hits (see Krugman here, Ezra Klein here, and Grep Ip here) for presenting one of the awards to the new Chairman of the House Budget Committee, Paul Ryan.

January 11, 2011

In a recent Roll Call Op-Ed, CRFB Board Member David Walker urges lawmakers to make bold fiscal policy steps to reduce the deficit. Walker challenges members of Congress to demonstrate accountability and fiscal leadership. 

My Views" are works published by members of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, but they do not necessarily reflect the views of all members of the Committee.

 

January 11, 2011

Wall Street banks have been drastically cutting their holdings of U.S. Treasuries, according to Bloomberg News. According to most analysts, this is a reaction to expectations of a stronger economy, which is leading banks to invest more heavily in private equities as opposed to Government bonds. While this is certainly good news, it does highlight the risk that U.S.

January 11, 2011

Yesterday the Federal Reserve announced it would be paying a record $78.4 billion to the U.S. Treasury for 2010. It accumulated this large sum from interest on its holdings of risky assets, like mortgage-backed securities, that it acquired during the financial crisis. The Fed's policy dictates that it turn over this money to the Treasury at the end of each year.

January 10, 2011

Shooting Puts Legislative Business on Hold – The shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and 19 others in Tucson, Arizona has resulted in House leaders suspending legislative activity this week. The only vote now expected this week is one on a resolution honoring Giffords and the other victims of the attack. The House was going to vote this week on repealing the health reform law.

Syndicate content