Posts Tagged ‘CBO’

Can the Income Tax Fund the Government We Want?

Can the income tax fund the government we seem to want? Probably not. Will lawmakers create a revenue system that will? Not anytime soon. That was the consensus of four tax policy experts at an Urban Institute panel I moderated this afternoon. The panelists–historian Joe Thorndike, Urban Institute economist and tax reform veteran Gene Steuerle, […]

How to Cut the Charitable Deduction Without Reducing Giving

If income tax deductions are capped or limited—an idea that often comes up in the debate over both the fiscal cliff and long-run tax reform—the biggest losers could well be charities. At a time when the government role in providing a safety net may shrink, many of these groups may become increasingly important.  Yet deduction […]

Gloom or Doom from CBO

The Congressional Budget Office’s summer budget update charts two undesirable paths for the nation’s economic and fiscal health next year. Call them Gloom and Doom. Gloom is what happens if the tax increases and government spending cuts scheduled to arrive in January actually occur. CBO says that would drive the economy back into recession in […]

Will the 2010 Health Law Cut the Deficit or Add to It?

In a new study, Chuck Blahous, who is a public trustee for Medicare and Social Security, concludes that the 2010 health law will add at least $340 billion to the federal deficit from 2012-2021. This is contrary to the official estimates by the Congressional Budget Office, which initially figured the Affordable Care Act would reduce the […]

The Budget Message Paul Ryan Really Sent

Paul Ryan may not have intended it, but his 2013 budget is the strongest argument I’ve seen for why any serious fiscal plan must include new revenues. It’s far more convincing than partisan Democratic complaints. Ryan says he wants to balance the budget only by cutting spending. But he proved with hard, relatively specific numbers […]

Budget Gimmicks Are Alive and Well in the Payroll Tax Cut

The other day, I criticized the unwillingness of Congress to finance the latest extension of the payroll tax cut. Since that blog, the Congressional Budget Office released its estimates of the cost of the entire mini-stimulus, including the so-called “doc fix” and changes in unemployment compensation. And the games were even worse than I feared. […]

What the Great Budget Debate Is Really About

Want to know what the Great Budget Debate of 2011 is really about? Ask Congressional Budget Office director Doug Elmendorf (who was a Tax Policy Center associate before joining CBO). In testimony to Congress’s  fiscal super committee on Tuesday, Doug put the whole thing into a few simple sentences: “I think really the fundamental question…is…where […]

Ten Things You Should Know About the Debt Limit Deal

Now that we’ve had a few days to absorb the debt limit agreement signed by President Obama on Aug. 2, it might be useful to review what it did– and did not–do. Here’s my Top Ten list. It avoided an economic catastrophe. This can easily be lost in all the noise about caps, triggers, and […]

What Will the Debt Deal Mean for Tax Reform?

What will the debt deal mean for the future of tax reform? Sadly, nothing good. The budget agreement is, for tax reformers, a huge disappointment.  It is based on the fantasy that the nation can return to a sound fiscal footing through spending cuts only.  It entirely ignores the revenue side of the budget. And […]

What Would the Gang of Six Really Do to Taxes?

As my Tax Policy Center colleague Donald Marron noted the other day, trying to sort through the various baselines in the Gang of Six’s bipartisan Senate budget plan is amusing, but not necessarily helpful. So, I’m going to take a different look: How much money would the government collect over the next decade under the […]