BEYOND THE NUMBERS
In Case You Missed It…
This week at CBPP we focused on health care, the federal budget and taxes, housing, Social Security, and poverty and inequality.
- On health care, Aviva Aron-Dine explained that the reported amendment to the American Health Care Act guts protections for people with pre-existing conditions and doesn’t address any of the bill’s underlying problems. Aron-Dine also noted that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplaces are poised for greater price stability and competition but cautioned that they are vulnerable to sabotage. Jessica Schubel illuminated the critical role Medicaid plays in schools in helping students, especially those with disabilities, get the care and services they need to thrive. Hannah Katch cautioned that adding a work requirement to Maine’s Medicaid program would likely increase hardship and fail to raise work rates. Jesse Cross-Call discussed new evidence showing that the ACA’s Medicaid expansion hasn’t hurt state budgets even as millions of low-income people gained coverage. We updated our Sabotage Watch page, tracking efforts to undermine the ACA.
- On the federal budget and taxes, Paul Van de Water clarified that providing an explicit appropriation for the ACA’s cost-sharing reductions wouldn’t require a budgetary offset. Van de Water also stressed that tax reform must not lose revenues and should aim to increase them. Chye-Ching Huang described how a new executive order signed by President Trump could make it easier for profitable corporations to avoid paying U.S. taxes. In two tax policy briefs, we outlined how repealing the estate tax would provide windfall tax cuts to the heirs of the wealthiest estates and noted how Republican tax proposals would emulate a Kansas tax cut package that has failed to produce promised economic results and led to deep revenue losses. Chuck Marr, Guillermo Herrera, and Huang explained how the Tax Foundation’s calculation of “Tax Freedom Day” can leave a misleading impression of the typical household’s tax burden.
- On housing, continuing our “Vouchers Work” blog series, Will Fischer highlighted the bipartisan nature of the 2016 Housing Opportunity Through Modernization act, which made several improvements to the Housing Choice Voucher program. Alicia Mazzara pointed out that demand and insufficient funding for vouchers has led to long waitlists for recipients.
- On Social Security, Emily Horton cited new research from the Social Security Administration to illustrate the importance of Social Security benefits to middle-class Americans.
- On poverty and inequality, Tazra Mitchell pointed to a New York Times piece highlighting how programs like the Earned Income Tax Credit that boost income and help families afford basic needs also enhance poor children’s future health, education, and projected earnings.
Chart of the Week: Only 50 Small Farms or Businesses Face Estate Tax
A variety of news outlets featured CBPP’s work and experts recently. Here are some highlights:
States spend millions to drug test the poor, turn up few positive results
April 20, 2017
The individual mandate still stands on Trump's first Tax Day
April 18, 2017
How the Tax-Filing Process Confuses Americans About Tax Policy
April 18, 2017
New Mexico Gov. Martinez vetoes higher education funding. All of it.
April 17, 2017
Supply-Side Economics, but for Liberals
New York Times
April 15, 2017