This week on Off the Charts, we focused on President Obama’s new budget, the federal budget and taxes, health policy, and state budgets and taxes.
On President Obama’s budget, we excerpted Robert Greenstein’s statement on the budget, his commentary on the pros and cons of switching to the “chained” Consumer Price Index, and our analysis of the budget. Also, Greenstein explained that the President’s budget represents a serious effort to reach a bipartisan budget compromise.
On the federal budget and taxes, we updated our backgrounders on federal and state budgets. Richard Kogan noted that most deficit savings to date have come from program cuts, not revenue increases. Paul Van de Water reiterated the problems with using “dynamic scoring” to estimate how tax reform proposals would affect the budget. Chuck Marr noted that federal income taxes on middle-income Americans remain near historic lows. And Chye-Ching Huang highlighted her contribution to New York Times’ latest “Room for Debate” on foreign tax havens.
On health policy, Edwin Park noted that President Obama’s budget affirms that the federal government will pay nearly all the costs of expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Sarah Lueck pointed out that a new study raises confusion about the cost of individual insurance premiums under health reform.
On state budgets and taxes, Nick Johnson explained that four governors’ radical tax plans have run into heavy opposition. Michael Leachman debunked Kansas Governor Sam Brownback’s claim that states can cut taxes deeply without hurting schools and other investments.