The Bottom Line

June 13, 2011

Except in Miami – The Miami Heat weren’t hot enough, but Washington saw record temperatures last week. Capitol Hill may warm things up this week as well as both chambers are in session together for the first time this month and the Biden group looks to pick up the pace of its debt limit/deficit reduction negotiations. CRFB will also add some sizzle with a big conference this week.

June 10, 2011

We are honored that Treasury & Risk has included CRFB's president, Maya MacGuineas, on their list of The 100 Most Influential Leaders in Finance for 2011. Names on the list range from government officials to policymakers to CEOs, including Ben Bernanke, Steve Jobs, and President Obama.

June 10, 2011

Update: Estimates updated

June 9, 2011

The bicameral, bipartisan debt limit and deficit reduction negotiations chaired by Vice President Biden resumed today with the group’s fifth meeting since it first convened last month. The pace of the talks is expected to pick up next week with as many as three meetings.

June 9, 2011

In his Senate confirmation hearing this morning to become the next Secretary of Defense, CIA Director Leon Panetta (and former CRFB chairman!) said that every element of the defense budget needs to be on the table when we discuss ways to get control of our mounting federal debt.

June 9, 2011

Yesterday, Fitch became the latest credit rating agency, following S&P and Moody’s in recent weeks, to warn the U.S. of a credit rating downgrade if we fail to raise the debt ceiling by August 2nd.

June 8, 2011

In the last few weeks there has been an incredible amount of talk about using targets, triggers, caps, and failsafes to help set us on a sustainable course. Many different approaches can be taken to solve the broken budget problem, and CRFB hopes the new Fiscal Toolbox from the Peterson-Pew Commission (PPC) will offer guidance in choosing the right approach to repair the budget. 

June 8, 2011

Yesterday, according to Congressional Quarterly (subscription required), Reps. Jim Cooper (D-TN) and Frank Wolf (R-VA) sent around a “Dear Colleague” letter, pledging their support for the Gang of Six’s efforts to create a comprehensive bipartisan deficit reduction plan based on the Fiscal Commission recommendations.

June 8, 2011
A Midweek Update on Federal Fiscal and Budget Policy Developments

Pawlenty of Ideas – GOP presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty gave a speech in Chicago on Tuesday where he laid out his fiscal and economic policy agenda. Among his proposals are reforming the tax code by eliminating many tax breaks (see our ideas for tax expenditures) while reducing tax rates. He also called for a balanced budget amendment to the U.S.

June 7, 2011
We'd Say Happy Birthday, But Only If They're Paid For

For today's 10-year anniversary of the 2001 tax cuts (EGTRRA), CRFB issued a release this morning calling for any extensions of the 2001/2003/2010 tax cuts to be fully paid for. The 2001 tax cuts, along with the expansions and extensions in 2003 and 2010, will have cost the Treasury well over $2 trillion by 2012 when they are scheduled to expire.

June 7, 2011

There seems to be no lack of commentary and analysis from the media and think tank community on our fiscal challenges in both this decade and beyond. Much of this, however, can seem a little wonky and esoteric for those who have not been following the debate inside the beltway.

June 7, 2011

This afternoon, the University of Maryland's School of Public Policy is hosting a panel on the budget deficit and national debt. Panelists include former Congressional Budget Office directors and CRFB board members Alice Rivlin, Doug Holtz-Eakin, Rudolph Penner, and Robert Reischauer. The event starts at 3:00 pm so be sure to check it out.

Click here to watch the event live on C-SPAN.

June 7, 2011

Rep. Darrell Issa, (R-CA), Rep. Dennis Ross, (R-FL), and Rep. Jason Chaffetz, (R-UT) recently introduced legislation that would cut the federal workforce by 10 percent by 2015. H.R.

June 6, 2011
A Weekly Update on Fiscal Policy Developments

Clay Masterpiece – Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer played yet another classic tennis match yesterday, with Nadal once again emerging victorious for his sixth French Open title. The distinctive red clay of Roland Garros produces slow-moving tennis characterized by long rallies and lots of spin on the ball.

June 3, 2011

Yesterday, Treasury announced that it would be selling its 6.6 percent equity stake in Chrysler to Fiat, which represents the last outstanding TARP investment in the company, which has been receiving assistance from the program since January 2009.

June 3, 2011

We can't just seem to catch a break from ratings firms. About a month and a half after S&P downgraded the U.S. rating outlook from stable to negative, Moody's is warning the U.S. that it will definitely review and possibly downgrade our debt if we fail to raise the debt ceiling.

June 3, 2011

In an op-ed today in the Washington Post, CRFB board members Erskine Bowles and Senator Alan Simpson argue that the Gang of Six -- despite hitting a few speed bumps -- are not only still relevant, but "it offers the last, best hope for a comprehensive bipartisan deficit reduction agreement in this Congress," as policymakers on both sides of the aisle have recognized.

June 2, 2011

Today's edition of USA Today features an editorial advocating increasing premiums for military retirees enrolled in TRICARE.

June 1, 2011

This morning, Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) released a statement signed by more than 150 economists furthering the call for spending cuts that exceed any raise in the debt ceiling.

June 1, 2011
A Midweek Update on Federal Fiscal and Budget Policy Developments

Feeling the Heat – As most of us return to work this week nursing sunburns and swapping stories of grilling glory, the heat is on in Washington, at least on one side of Capitol Hill. Senators are out of town this week, but Representatives are working on appropriations. Meanwhile, the debt limit deadline continues to draw closer.

Syndicate content