The Bottom Line

August 31, 2012

Social Security trustee Charles Blahous has a interesting new commentary on the long-run sustainability of the Social Security program. The combined Social Security (OASDI) trust fund is due to be exhausted by 2033, but that measure, Blahous claims, gives the mistaken impression that we still have time to wait to make changes.

August 31, 2012

The final night of the Republican National Convention was an eventful one, featuring speeches from the likes of former Gov. Jeb Bush (FL), Sen. Marco Rubio (FL), and, yes, Clint Eastwood. The headline, of course, was former Gov.

August 31, 2012

We have talked before about the long run unsustainable growth of our health care spending. But when it comes to controlling Medicare and Medicaid costs, there will inevitably be plenty of room for political attacks. In a video and an accompanying article in The Wall Street Journal, David Wessel explains that health care spending deserves reasoning, not rhetoric.

August 30, 2012

Continuing our Updates From the Convention series, we head into the final night of the Republican National Convention. No doubt the speech to watch tonight will be from former Gov. Mitt Romney as he accepts the Republican nomination for President. With the RNC's national debt clock nearing $16 trillion, Mitt Romney should devote part of his speech tonight to his plan to tackle the federal debt.

August 30, 2012

Last night featured an all star cast of speakers, from Vice Presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) to Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) to former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. But one of the lines that stuck with us from last night came from Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY):

August 30, 2012

The New York Times' "Room for Debate" this week takes on our federal debt with a forum entitled "Is the Deficit Urgent, or a Distraction?" Writing in favor of the "urgent" side, naturally, were CRFB president Maya MacGuineas and Fiscal Commission co-chair and Fix the Debt co-founder Erskine Bowles. 

August 29, 2012

Continuing our Updates from the Conventions series, we look forward to tonight's convention schedule, packed with some of the biggest names in the Republican Party. But one of the highlights of the night should be the speech at 10:00pm from the Vice Presidential candidate Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI).

August 29, 2012

Fitch Ratings Managing Director David Riley appeared yesterday on Bloomberg Television, suggesting that the fiscal cliff could threaten the U.S.'s AAA credit rating. While Fitch did not join S&P last August in downgrading the U.S. after the debt ceiling debate, it has kept the U.S. on a negative outlook, indicating that it could change its position in the next 12 months.

August 29, 2012

Our Fix the Debt team has been meeting all different kinds of concerned citizens in Tampa at the Republican National Convention. Many people we have talked to agree that lawmakers need to stop being so partisan and work toward a compromise so that they can get our debt under control. You can see some of the discussions we had in the short video below.

August 29, 2012

After some hurricane-related delays, the Republican National Convention began yesterday in Tampa. We have our Fix the Debt team on the ground (see their tweets at @FixTheDebt) and we will be covering the convention here on our blog. The night was capped off by the keynote speech from New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (full transcript here).

August 28, 2012

The RNC Convention is now fully in session after a weather related recess Monday and the Fix the Debt team is already in place to ensure fiscal responsibility is part of the conversation in Tampa. We hope that the two national debt clocks—one displaying total U.S.

August 28, 2012

Considering our nation's debt situation, it is more important that ever to ensure that those seeking office have a plan to take on the issue. It's why we have urged debate moderators to ask serious questions about our fiscal problems in the debates this October with the Debate The Debt petition. But it's not all up to the moderators, because citizens can have a big impact on making candidates focus on the right kinds of questions in town hall meeting and along the campaign trail.

August 28, 2012

As the presidential campaigns have turned their attention to Medicare (which we analyzed two weeks ago), each one frames the issue as protecting Medicare benefits that past and present American workers have paid for.

August 28, 2012
Former Governor Jeb Bush (R-FL) declared his support for Simpson-Bowles in a recent interview with the Tampa Bay Times, in order to begin taking on our growing federal debt. Bush argues that the only way to lead the country on this issue was to find compromise, just as Simpson-Bowles does. Here's the key part of the interview:  

Would you have embraced Simpson-Bowles?

To save the country's fiscal future? I would.

August 27, 2012

Elaine Kamarck and James Pinkerton, co-chairs of The RATE Coalition, a bipartisan group dedicated to promote tax reform, write in today's The Hill that we should look back to 1986 as an example on how to move forward on corporate tax reform.

August 27, 2012

A recent editorial from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch argues for what they call a "mutual non-aggression pact on spending and deficits." In their view, this pact would be necessary during the 2012 presidential campaign so as to set the stage for compromise in the lame duck session or in 2013. They lay out their argument very succintly, saying:

August 24, 2012

Over the past couple of days, CRFB President Maya MacGuineas and CRFB Board Members former Senator Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles have made the rounds on the news networks.

August 24, 2012

We've warned many times before that going off the fiscal cliff would throw the economy into a double dip recession.

August 24, 2012

On New America's weekly podcast series The Sidebar, CRFB Research Director Jason Peuquet added some analysis on Representative Paul Ryan's (R-WI) budget and how his pick as Governor Mitt Romney's running mate will change the focus of the presidential election. Peuquet was excited about the Ryan pick, as it keeps fiscal issues in the political spotlight.

August 23, 2012

In a recent op-ed in the Miami Herald, World Fuel Services Corporation chairman Paul Stebbins touted his membership in the Campaign to Fix the Debt. First, he details the challenge the country faces with regards to its fiscal issues and why they are problematic.

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