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Posts by James R. Horney

Program Cuts Far Exceed Revenue Increases Under Latest Obama Offer

December 19, 2012

Earlier today, we pointed out that when tallying up the mix of spending cuts and tax increases in the latest deficit-reduction proposals, one should include the spending cuts that will take place over the coming decade under last year’s Budget Control Act. ...

Don’t Forget: Protect the Poorest Americans in Any Deficit Savings “Backstop”

December 19, 2012

At some point, the President and Congress will likely agree on a deficit package that includes both up-front savings and a target for more savings that they would achieve in 2013 by changing tax and spending policies.

The package also will likely include a backstop mechanism that’s designed to ensure that the 2013 savings come to fruition even if the President and Congress fail to agree...

Criticizing President’s Latest Offer, Speaker Boehner Ignores Reality of Spending Cuts

December 19, 2012

House Speaker John Boehner is complaining that President Obama’s latest offer in their “fiscal cliff” negotiations is too light on spending cuts, but he and his House Republican colleagues are ignoring the cuts that policymakers have enacted since last year as part of ongoing deficit reduction efforts.

“The White House offer yesterday was essentially $1.3 trillion in new revenues for...

Sullivan Likes Our Take on Bowles-Simpson

October 23, 2012

10-2-12bud.JPGIn the latest Tax Notes, Martin Sullivan has some kind words for our recent report, “What Was Actually in Bowles-Simpson?”  He notes that the “much-touted Bowles-Simpson deficit reduction plan is widely characterized as reducing the deficit by $4 trillion and having a 2-1 ratio of spending...

Cooper-LaTourette Plan Not as Balanced as Bowles-Simpson: Take Two

March 29, 2012

I blogged yesterday about the Cooper-LaTourette budget plan and its proponents’ claim that it reduces deficits through a mixture of two-thirds spending cuts and one-third tax reform — the same ratio as the Bowles-Simpson plan. I offered one explanation of why that’s not true.  Here, let me offer another.

As I wrote yesterday, Bowles-Simpson does indeed have roughly two dollars in...

Cooper-LaTourette Plan Not as Balanced as Bowles-Simpson

March 28, 2012

Proponents of the Cooper-LaTourette budget plan claim that it reduces deficits through a mixture of two-thirds spending cuts and one-third tax reform — the same ratio as the Bowles-Simpson plan. But that’s not true.

Yes, the Bowles-Simpson plan had roughly two dollars in spending cuts for every dollar in tax increases — if you use a baseline that assumes that President Bush’s...

Ryan Plan Unlikely to Balance the Budget for Decades

March 28, 2012

Despite its massive spending cuts, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s budget (which the House is considering this week) would still have a deficit of $287 billion in fiscal year 2022.  And the Congressional Budget Office estimates that it wouldn’t produce a surplus until 2040.

Chairman Ryan disagrees, saying in...

The Massive Hidden Safety-Net Cuts in Chairman Ryan's Budget

March 21, 2012

A key misunderstood element of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s budget plan is his proposed cut in spending for “other mandatory” programs  — non-discretionary programs other than Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and other health programs.  His plan shows almost $1.9 trillion in cuts in such programs over the next ten years compared to what President Obama’s budget proposed for...

No Spending Cuts in 2013, But Bigger Cuts Later, Under Senate Proposal

February 7, 2012

Senate Republican Whip John Kyl (R-AZ) and six other senators last week proposed to cancel the automatic $109.3 billion “sequestration” (spending cut) scheduled...

Cutting Federal Pay and Workforce Poses Problems

December 7, 2011

Senate Republicans propose to freeze federal employee pay through 2015 and shrink the federal workforce by 10 percent over the next ten years to help pay for extending the payroll tax cut — although the savings actually would come from further large cuts in discretionary programs, potentially hitting everything from veterans’...