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Most Deficit Savings Have Come from Program Cuts

Tomorrow’s release of President Obama’s budget will bring new attention to the debate over how to reduce deficits.  A key sticking point in that debate has been Republican leaders’ opposition to any new revenues on top of those in January’s American Taxpayer Relief Act.

With that in mind, here’s a fact worth remembering:  some 70 percent of the $2.3 trillion in policy savings that the President and Congress have enacted over the past few years — which will produce $2.75 trillion in total deficit reduction when interest savings are included — have come through program cuts rather than revenue increases (see graph).