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March 18, 2016 at 4:45 PM

This week at CBPP, we focused on the federal budget and taxes, state budgets and taxes, the economy, health care, food assistance, and housing. 

  • On the federal budget and taxes, Robert Greenstein explained that the House Republican budget plan would mean more poverty, inequality, and hardship.  He and Isaac Shapiro contrasted House Speaker Paul Ryan’s stated commitment to fighting poverty with GOP proposals for deep cuts to anti-poverty programs.  David Reich exposed a gimmick in the House budget designed to boost defense spending.  Greenstein urged Congress to reject a House proposal to deny the Child Tax Credit to families who file their taxes with an Individual Tax Identification Number instead of a Social Security number.  Janne Huang trumpeted VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) Awareness Day, which calls attention to the valuable free tax assistance that VITA gives low-income people.     
  • On state budgets and taxes, Jon Shure illustrated how Alabama’s use of costly tax subsidies to lure companies to the state has made it harder for the state to improve its education system.
  • On the economy, Robert Greenstein testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on why a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution is unsound policy that would adversely affect the economy. 
  • On health care, Tara Straw explained that a House proposal to significantly change health reform’s premium tax credits would leave more than 220,000 people uninsured.  Edwin Park noted that a House measure limiting states’ use of taxes on health care providers to finance Medicaid would likely result in damaging cuts and undermine health reform’s Medicaid expansion.  He also addressed a House proposal to cut funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, which would shift costs to states, and outlined the effects of a House proposal to block-grant Medicaid and cut its funding.  David Reich warned that a House proposal would make debilitating cuts to the Centers for Disease Control and hinder essential public health services.  Judith Solomon examined shortcomings in the federal insurance marketplace’s process for verifying eligibility.
  • On food assistance, Shelby Gonzales praised a new federal initiative to use Medicaid data to connect low-income children to school meals.  We updated our report on the 500,000 to 1 million Americans set to lose SNAP in 2016 as a harsh three-month limit on benefits returns in many areas. 
  • On housing, Barbara Sard urged Congress to fund the President’s proposal to help public housing agencies in ten regions collaborate on initiatives to help low-income families use vouchers to move to higher-opportunity neighborhoods. 

Chart of the Week: House Budget Chair’s Plan Cuts Programs Outside Social Security and Medicare Far Below Historical Level


A variety of news outlets featured CBPP’s work and experts recently. Here are some highlights:

Will the Democrats Ever Face an African-American Revolt?
New York Times
March 16, 2016

Deficit-Slashing Plan Advances Through House Panel
Associated Press
March 16, 2016

Fighting down to the last $30 billion
March 14, 2016

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