The Bottom Line

February 29, 2012

On Tuesday, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report on possible duplication and overlap by government agencies. This is the second annual report released by GAO, a result of an amendment from Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) to the debt ceiling increase in January 2010. The report not only identifies areas of government duplication, overlap and fragmentation, but also other cost saving opportunities beyond its original mandate.

February 29, 2012

Last week, we released our in-depth analysis of the debt impact of the four Republican candidates’ budget proposals, a report that received a significant amount of media attention and brought some attention to the fiscal side of the campaign.

February 29, 2012

On Monday, House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD) gave a speech calling for Congress to "Go Big" on deficit reduction.

Hoyer opened by making the case--as we have many times in the past--that there is no conflict between addressing the short-term economic situation and putting the debt on a sustainable path. As he explained:

February 28, 2012

(Go) Big Events – The Academy Awards and the NBA All-Star Game competed for attention Sunday night. Both events are more about showmanship than substance. The same can be said about the fiscal debate, except without Billy Crystal or Kobe Bryant. There were some big budget policy events last week as well that advanced the "Go Big" message for a comprehensive fiscal plan. While there were no slam dunks or musical numbers, support is definitely growing for real solutions.

February 28, 2012

Last year, our Spotlight on the States series highlighted many contentious battles to eliminate budget shortfalls in state capitals across the country. Of course, the states have been in budget-cutting mode for a few years now as the recession has led to steep drops in state revenue.

February 28, 2012

CBPP released a paper last week re-affirming their support for switching to the chained CPI for calculation inflation adjustments for benefit programs and the tax code.

February 27, 2012
Can Tax Reform Save the U.S. Economy?

Were it not for the growth in spending on Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, the United States wouldn't have much of a budget problem. The two biggest programs—Social Security and Medicare—are retirement programs that are extremely popular politically. Both need to be reformed, but they cannot be cut abruptly and they cannot be cut drastically. Consequently, it's hard to avoid concluding that some revenue increases will be needed to solve our fiscal problems.

February 24, 2012

True to this year's State of the Union address, the Obama Administration released a proposal Wednesday that seeks to lower the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 28 percent while eliminating many loopholes and broadening the base.

February 24, 2012

Several developments this week give us hope that this election season will offer some much-needed focus on fiscal policy. Although exit/entrance polls from each state that has voted in the primaries so far have indicated that the federal budget deficit is the number two most important issue for voters behind the economy/jobs, there has yet to be much substantive discussion of the topic on the campaign trail. But that might be changing.

February 22, 2012
Watch It Live Here

This morning, CRFB’s U.S. Budget Watch project will unveil Primary Colors: The GOP Candidates and the National Debt, a study of the policy proposals of the four major Republican presidential candidates and their impact on the national debt. President Obama will be included in a forthcoming report. (For an addendum on Governor Romney's 2/22 tax plan, click here).

February 21, 2012

President Obama’s campaign made a splash this morning with their claims that Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney would dramatically increase the national debt as president.

February 21, 2012

Update: Watch the live stream below.

Today in Boston, CRFB kicks off a national tour of policymakers, fiscal experts, and business leaders as part of the national “Go Big” campaign pushing for a major deficit reduction deal in 2012.

February 20, 2012
A Weekly Update on Budget and Fiscal Policy Developments and a Look Ahead

Happy Presidents Day – As we honor those who have led this country, the race to become the next in that line is becoming more heated. And federal budget and fiscal issues are at the heart of the campaign. Voters consistently rank deficits/debt as the second most important issue, and it is closely tied to the top issue – economy/jobs. The decisions made now towards aiding the recovery could have a significant effect on the long-term budget outlook, and fiscal decisions will impact the economy.

February 20, 2012

In our paper on the President's budget, we noted that the budget would only temporarily stabilize the debt as a percent of GDP. In fact, it would rise from roughly 77 percent in 2022 to 93 percent in 2035 and about 125 percent in 2050. Where did those numbers come from?

February 17, 2012

In what is being hailed as a demonstration of bipartisanship, Congress broke its previous commitment to deficit-neutrality and agreed to a bill (HR 3630) that would dig a bigger fiscal hole. The bill, which extends the payroll tax cut, unemployment insurance benefits, and "doc fix" through the end of the year, passed the House by a 293-132 vote and passed the Senate by a 60-36 vote today. 

February 17, 2012

This week, in our blog series on the President's budget, we have talked about the overall numbers in the President's budget and the amount of savings from each budget area. Today, we will go more in-depth into the largest area of savings in the budget: tax policy.

February 17, 2012
The Fiscal Consequences of the GOP Candidates' Platforms

On Thursday, February 23, CRFB’s US Budget Watch project will unveil its study of the budgetary impact of the campaign promises of the major Republican presidential candidates. RSVP for this event, which will take place at 9:30 am, to see all the analysis as well as a discussion with veteran budget experts Vic Fazio, Bill Frenzel, and Alice Rivlin.

February 16, 2012

Senators Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Richard Burr (R-NC) came out with a Medicare proposal today that adds to the list of plans out there to rein in the cost of the program.

February 16, 2012

In our continued analysis of the President’s budget, we now move to a detailed examination of what the budget would look like at the end of the ten-year window in 2022 and how it would change from today.

Syndicate content