This week on Off the Charts, we talked about federal budget issues, state budget issues, tax issues, and some basics about the U. S. tax system.
- On federal budget issues, numerous posts addressed aspects of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s budget plan. Dottie Rosenbaum explained why millions of Americans would lose some or all of their SNAP (food stamp) benefits; Edwin Park illustrated the steep cuts in Medicaid funding that would have occurred over the past decade under the plan and explained why the plan’s funding formula may be even worse than advertised; Kathy Ruffing updated our figures on the relatively small deficit reduction that the plan would provide; and Paul Van de Water detailed the plan’s impact on Medicare. Also, Bob Greenstein appeared on MSNBC’s “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” to discuss the federal debt limit debate and the President’s deficit-reduction plan, and Paul Van de Water discussed why a recent spending cap proposal is no less radical than Chairman Ryan’s proposal.
- On state budget issues, Erica Williams detailed why Michigan’s new budget cut deal will hurt thousands of working families, while Michael Leachman outlined how Missouri’s cut in unemployment benefits will harm jobless workers and the state economy.
- On tax issues, Chuck Marr explained why a corporate tax holiday wouldn’t generate the promised economic benefits, and Michael Mazerov analyzed the harmful effects of a bill that would undermine state corporate income taxes.
- Just in time for Tax Day, we assembled ten charts to provide a big-picture look at the U.S. tax system.
In other news, we analyzed how the Ryan plan would slash SNAP funding and raise seniors’ out-of-pocket medical costs and explored what would have happened if Medicaid had been block-granted in 2000. We also released a podcast detailing the Ryan plan’s impact on Medicare. We explained the basics of unemployment insurance and state spending and released charts on the legacy of the recent recession. We explained why states and localities should close a tax loophole related to online travel companies, and detailed why the numbers behind the Tax Foundation’s “Tax Freedom Day” are misleading. We posted state-by-state factsheets on federal rental assistance and explained the methodology behind them.
Bob Greenstein released a statement on the President’s deficit-reduction plan, and we explained why states should decouple their tax codes from the impact of a recent cut in federal business taxes. We issued a report on a harmful federal spending cap proposal and explained why reforming tax expenditures would reduce deficits.