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This week on Off the Charts, we focused on the federal budget and taxes, state budgets and taxes, the economy, food assistance, Social Security, housing, and health.

  • On the federal budget and taxes, Chuck Marr noted House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp’s (R-MI) troubling stand on tax compliance and pointed out that the House GOP’s IRS budget cuts will stifle enforcement and benefit tax evaders.  He urged policymakers to respond quickly to the current uptick in corporate tax inversions and discredited the idea that permanent “bonus depreciation” is a positive step toward tax reform.  He also showed how a Tax Policy Center analysis confirms our finding that the Child Tax Credit bill before the House would make many relatively affluent people better off while making low-income working families poorer.  Paul Van de Water explained that the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) new long-term budget projections are very similar to those that CBO published in September 2013.  Chye-Ching Huang highlighted a segment on HBO’s Last Week Tonight that knocked down estate tax myths.  Richard Kogan discussed the serious economic risks that a constitutional balanced budget amendment would pose.
  • On state budgets and taxes, Michael Leachman explained why states should reject resolutions calling for a constitutional convention.  Michael Mazerov described the risks of permanently banning sales taxes on Internet access charges and refuted three myths about the Internet Tax Freedom Act’s “Grandfather Clause.”
  • On the economy, we excerpted Jared Bernstein’s congressional testimony on the first five years of economic recovery since the Great Recession.
  • On food assistance, Becca Segal listed 10 reasons for schools to adopt community eligibility, an option that enables high-poverty school districts to eliminate applications and serve meals to all students at no charge.  Zoë Neuberger pointed to positive data from the first seven states that have implemented community eligibility.
  • On Social Security, Paul Van de Water explained why Congress should boost the share of the Social Security payroll tax revenue devoted to Disability Insurance.
  • On housing, Will Fischer highlighted the need to rebalance federal housing policy to better support low-income renters.
  • On health, Jesse Cross-Call described the positive benefits that the states that have expanded Medicaid under health reform are experiencing.

Jared Bernstein testified before Congress’ Joint Economic Committee on five years of economic recovery from the Great Recession.  We issued papers on the need to increase the share of the Social Security payroll tax that’s devoted to Disability Insurance, the risks of states calling for a constitutional convention, and the economic risks of a constitutional balanced budget amendment.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week:


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

Finally, Signs of Momentum on Corporate Inversions
Huffington Post
July 17, 2014

New jobs numbers offer no relief for Brownback
Lawrence Journal-World
July 17, 2014

Internet Tax Ban Could Be Big Win For Skype And Snapchat, Major Loss For States
July 17, 2014

The misguided, counterproductive campaign against the IRS
July 15, 2014

House GOP’s IRS Budget Cuts:  A Field Day for Tax Cheats
Huffington Post
July 15, 2014

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