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House Budget Would Cut Non-Defense Programs to Historic Lows

July 19, 2017

In her budget plan, House Budget Committee Chair Diane Black directed some of her most draconian cuts at non-defense discretionary (NDD) programs, which promote opportunity, provide building blocks for economic growth, and fund basic public services, among many other things.   These programs have been...

Republican Budgets Call for Deep Cuts in Non-Defense Discretionary Spending

Deficits Under Trump Budget Even Bigger Than CBO Expected to Show

July 12, 2017

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) analysis of President Trump’s 2018 budget, due out tomorrow, will likely show the budget reducing the deficit by considerably less than the $5.6 trillion over ten years that the Administration claims. That’s mainly because CBO likely won’t accept the Administration’s claim that its policies would generate enough added economic growth to reduce deficits by...


Also Missing from Trump’s Skinny Budget: $18 Billion in 2017 Cuts

March 17, 2017

There’s an $18 billion hole in President Trump’s “skinny” budget:  it calls on Congress to cut this year’s funding for non-defense discretionary programs by $18 billion but gives no hint about which programs the President wants to cut.

Most press coverage of the skinny budget has focused on the White House proposals for fiscal year 2018 — big increases in defense funding...

Budget Process - Money Puzzle Pieces

House GOP Effort to Kill Social Services Block Grant Should Be Cautionary Tale

April 8, 2016

April 14, 2016: This post has been updated to reflect the number of people receiving SSBG-funded services.

The House Republican effort, in its 2017 budget, to eliminate the Social Services Block Grant (SSBG) should serve as a cautionary tale — with lots at stake for millions of Americans — in light of Republican proposals also to convert Medicaid and...

money puzzle

GAO Agrees: Current Accounting Method Beats Fair Value Approach

February 29, 2016

“The Current Method To Estimate Credit Subsidy Costs Is More Appropriate for Budget Estimates Than A Fair Value Approach.”  The title of today's report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) says it all.

Currently, the federal government shows the actual amounts the government spends and receives on its loan and loan guarantee...

Dollar Bill Puzzle Pieces

Congress’ Budget Course Based on Ideology, Not Rules

September 18, 2015

As it faces key budget issues this fall, Congress — particularly the Republican majority — has taken different approaches to paying for programs that reflect its policy and ideological preferences rather than consistently apply standard budget rules, as we explain in a...

E Pluribis Unum Budget - high res

A Double Standard to Pay for Highways, Mass Transit

September 16, 2015

Congress, while addressing a shortfall in the Highway Trust Fund this fall, has taken inconsistent approaches to whether and how to pay for new costs; in fact it is applying special, stringent rules only to the highway fund, effectively forcing lawmakers to pay for some highway funding that does not constitute an increase above existing levels, as we explain in a...

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Our Latest Look at the Nation’s Long-Term Fiscal Outlook

September 14, 2015

The nation’s fiscal outlook has improved significantly since 2010, but it remains challenging, according to our new long-term budget projections

Under current budget policies, we project that the ratio of debt to gross domestic product — which was 74...

In Focus: Debt-to-GDP Ratio Virtually Flat Until Early 2020s, Then Rises Gradually

Federal Debt Limit’s Harmful, Report Shows

July 16, 2015

With the federal government on course to hit the legal debt limit this year, a new Government Accountability Office (GAO) study shows that the limit is harmful.  That’s consistent with our view, briefly here and in detail...

Budget Process - Money Puzzle Pieces

CBO Contradicts Itself — Long-Term Budget Picture Improving, Not Worsening

June 17, 2015

The Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) new report on the budget picture opens by saying, “The long-term outlook for the federal budget has worsened dramatically over the past several years,” blaming the Great Recession and the steps taken to address it.  But CBO’s own data, in that very report, show that’s not the case.  The CBO data that allow an apples-to-apples comparison of its new...

Long-Term Budget Outlook Has Improved