This week on Off the Charts, we discussed the House jobs bill and the Kerry-Lieberman climate change proposal, explained how health reform will make health care more affordable, and looked at tax developments affecting state budgets.
BEYOND THE NUMBERS
The main reason most uninsured people don’t have coverage is that they can’t afford it, so several core elements of the new health reform law are designed to make coverage more affordable. One of them is a system of tax credits to help people of modest means pay premiums and out-of-pocket costs (like co-payments for doctor visits). Here, very briefly, is how it would work.
As states cut everything from education to health care to address historic budget shortfalls, the last thing they need is for Congress to undercut an important revenue source for many of them. But that’s exactly what would happen if Congress eliminated the federal tax deduction for state-level estate and inheritance tax payments.
Misplaced budgetary concerns are impeding major legislation that would create and preserve jobs, continue unemployment and health benefits for those who are out of work, and fix Medicare’s flawed payment formula for physicians for several years.
Despite all the harsh anti-government talk in Washington and around the country, voters in Arizona yesterday did something that will surprise lots of people: they said they wanted to pay more taxes.
What’s going on? Reality is trumping rhetoric — and not just in Arizona.
Today, we sat down with the Center’s Chief Economist, Chad Stone, to discuss how the new climate change legislation will affect low-income households.
Given the wildly inaccurate description of the TANF Emergency Fund on the “YouCut” website, the vote to eliminate the program is meaningless. Far from a “backdoor way to undo” welfare reform, the fund has enabled states to expand work-focused programs within TANF despite high unemployment and a weak economy.
In an earlier post, I explained that the TANF Emergency Fund is helping to place some 180,000 low-income parents and youth who would otherwise be unemployed into paid jobs in the private and public sectors. The table below lists the estimated number of jobs in most of the 35 states that are operating jobs programs (or are planning to) using the fund.
This week on Off the Charts, we examined the new Senate climate change proposal, fact-checked claims about health reform, and discussed federal and state tax policies and their effects on deficits.
Last night, the Center’s executive director, Robert Greenstein, received the 2010 Daniel Patrick Moynihan Prize, from the American Academy of Political and Social Science “to honor those whose careers in the academic or public arena have been dedicated to the use of social science research to improve public policy.” Daniel Patrick Moynihan was U.S. Senator from New York, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, official in four presidential administrations, Harvard professor, prolific author, and leading public intellectual on a wide range of domestic and international issues.