The PREP Plan: Paying for the Tax Extenders to Set Up Tax Reform

Before the end of the year, Congress will again consider renewal of the “tax extenders,” a collection of more than 50 expired tax breaks for individuals and businesses. Reinstating the normal tax extenders retroactively for 2015 and extending them through the end of 2016 without offsets would cost nearly $95 billion over ten years. CRFB’s Paying for Reform and Extension Policies (PREP) Plan, originally released in the fall of 2014, offers a better approach.


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Emerging Tax Deal Could Add $2.3 Trillion in Debt by 2035

A fiscally irresponsible bipartisan deal is emerging to re-instate, make permanent, and in some cases expand many expired tax breaks known as tax extenders. According to several press reports (behind paywall), the deal could cost $700 billion over a decade.

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Fiscal FactCheck Releases Infographic on Candidates' Tax Plans

CRFB’s new Fiscal FactCheck project, today, released an infographic comparing the costs of several GOP presidential candidates’ tax plans. So far, the Tax Foundation has scored plans from Bush, Cruz, Jindal, Paul, Rubio, Santorum, and Trump. Although these plans offer a number of thoughtful improvements to the tax code, they would also add trillions to the deficit.

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2016 Fiscal FactCheck

The next President will need to confront a number of budgetary challenges. Yet too often, election campaigns are about telling voters what they want to hear rather than what they need to know. To separate fiction from reality, the Fiscal FactCheck series will monitor statements made during the the 2016 campaign on an ongoing basis. Follow @fiscalfactcheck on Twitter for updates.

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CRFB's Blog: The Bottom Line

Congress is in the process of negotiating a $700 billion deal that would extend several expired tax provisions known as tax extenders. Once interest costs are considered the deal could cost up to $840 billion. Historically, tax extenders bills would simply revive expired tax breaks, but this year, the deal is expected to also expand provisions, create new policies, and include policy riders unrelated to expired tax provisions that will account for one-sixth of the bill's cost at about $120 billion.

December 1, 2015
"100 Ways the Government Dropped the Ball"

Senator James Lankford (R-OK), former Sen. Tom Coburn's (R-OK) successor, is maintaining the Debt Doctor's legacy with his Federal Fumbles book published Monday. Lankford examines federal programs, agencies, and regulations to come up with 100 "fumbles" that he thinks could be corrected in order to enhance efficiency and cut government waste while streamlining the essential services that government can and does provide. Not only does Lankford provide descriptions of each misstep, he also proposes a solution for each of them.

November 30, 2015
Campaigns must focus on debt before all else

Robert L. Bixby, executive director of the Concord Coalition, and Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget and head of the Campaign to Fix the Debt, wrote a commentary (paywall) that appeared in the Nashua Telegraph this past weekend. It is reposted here.

The next president will face an array of pressing issues. One issue, however, transcends them all: the unsustainable projected growth of the federal debt. No candidate's vision of the future, regardless of party or ideology, will be credible if it rests on the premise of more and more government borrowing.

A fiscally irresponsible bipartisan deal is emerging to re-instate, make permanent, and in some cases expand many of the tax breaks known as the tax extenders. According to several press reports (behind paywall), the deal could end up costing $700 billion over a decade. When interest is included, that means the emerging tax extenders deal could add nearly $850 billion to the decade this decade and $2.3 trillion by 2035.

June 4, 2013
CRFB's latest interactive tool "The Reformer" is a handy game that allows users to design their own Social Security plan. Users can select from a wide variety of benefit and revenue changes to make the system sustainably solvent. The tool then shows the effect on the program's finances and benefit and tax levels.
September 27, 2011
If you've ever wanted to design your own corporate tax reform, now you can with our new Interactive Tax Reform Calculator. There is no question that the U.S. corporate tax system is badly in need of reform, and leaders in both parties have been pursuing this goal.

Join Our Team!

Current job opportunities at the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget include:

  • Director of the Fiscal Institute
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CRFB Projects

The McCrery-Pomeroy SSDI Solutions Initiative is dedicated to identifying practical improvements to the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program. The SSDI Solutions Initiative is calling for academic papers on innovative ways to make the SSDI program better serve workers with disabilities, those who pay into the program, and the economy as a whole.

The Campaign to Fix the Debt is an unprecedented and bipartisan coalition that seeks to mobilize members of business, government, and policy communities to urge Congress and the President to enact a comprehensive debt deal.

There is a growing consensus that the budget process is broken. The Better Budget Process Initiative will put forward specific options to reform and improve the budget process in a wide range of areas, including increasing focus on the long-term fiscal outlook, improving the process for dealing with the debt limit, strengthening statutory budget enforcement, revising the content and structure of the budget resolution, moving to biennial budgeting, and addressing treatment of tax expenditures in the budget process.