Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

Media Coverage

Sep 6, 2017|Politico

North Dakota, here we come

That’s why some people on K Street say they haven’t heard much about it recently, or aren’t all that concerned about its impact. Still: “Ultimately, budget rules like PAYGO can't stop Congress from adding to the debt if that is the will of Congress, but it can make it harder to do so and force Congress to acknowledge it is choosing to increase debt and hold members accountable for that decision,” Ed Lorenzen of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget told Morning Tax.

Sep 6, 2017|CNBC

Trump calls America 'the highest taxed nation in the world'—here's how the US actually compares

You can see this reflected in a chart by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget in 2016, which uses slightly different numbers. By their calculations, Denmark comes in at over 50 percent. But the U.S. remains steady at 26 percent, significantly below the average of 34 percent. As such, America is actually "among the lowest-taxed countries in the OECD." The OECD, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, has 35 member countries, including the most advanced nations in the world.

Sep 5, 2017|Voice of America

In Harvey's Wake, New Financial Realism Hits White House

As recently as two weeks ago, Trump was touting the idea of closing the government if Congress didn’t allocate money for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. But in the wake of the most expensive natural disaster ever to hit the United States, the idea of using a government shutdown as leverage suddenly seems absurd.

“That’s what has changed the most,” said Maya MacGuineas, president of the bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Budget. “The chances of a government shutdown have been reduced to near zero.”

Sep 5, 2017|The Fiscal Times

How Some Good Could Come from a Debt Ceiling Crisis

Back in March, Butler, long associated with the Heritage Foundation and now with the Brookings Institution, and Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, co-wrote a paper that argued for the creation of a budgeting process that defines the long-term spending plan for the major entitlement programs, including Social Security and Medicare. The pair called for a 25-year spending plan that would be reviewed and adjusted every four years, following presidential elections. Spending and revenues would be adjusted regularly by a bipartisan commission appointed by Congress.

Aug 31, 2017|Bloomberg

Trump’s Tax-Cut Bid Hits New Obstacle: Hurricane Harvey’s Costs

While his remarks included few specifics, Trump repeated his desire to slash the corporate income tax rate to 15 percent from 35 percent. He also called for an unspecified middle class tax cut -- previously, he has sought a doubling of the standard deduction, which would benefit working-class taxpayers. Together, the two provisions would cost an estimated $3.7 trillion in revenue over 10 years, according to estimates by the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

“Congress shouldn’t be debating a deficit-increasing tax cut because our debt is at record levels,” said Maya MacGuineas, the CRFB’s president.

Also, she said, the need to pay for Hurricane Harvey relief “is a reminder of why it is so important to have our fiscal house in order.”

Aug 31, 2017|The Washington Post

Sober, reasonable conservatives should oppose unpaid-for tax cuts

The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget argues, “It is more important now than ever that tax reform does not add to the debt. This means that every tax cut needs to be replaced with an equivalent offset that ensures that tax reform does not much our unsustainable fiscal situation even worse.” Several of CRFB’s reasons for opposing debt-creating tax legislation deserve consideration.

Aug 31, 2017|The Fiscal Times

The $500 Billion Question at the Heart of the Tax Cut Debate

Groups opposed to big tax cuts are pushing for the current law baseline. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities decries the current policy approach as an “arcane maneuver” that “hides $439 billion in tax cuts worth at least $40,000 a year for the top 0.1 percent.” But it’s not just liberal groups that are opposed to the current policy standard. Deficit hawks at the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget are also speaking out against it, saying it would allow deficits to rise by $462 billion more than a current law baseline: “Using a current policy baseline disguises a half-trillion dollar tax cut as ‘paid for’ even though deficits would increase.”

Aug 30, 2017|NPR

FACT CHECK: 4 Claims From Trump's Tax Speech

And that leads to a more important point here: Many economists believe that sustained 3 percent growth, like Trump says he can help create, is unlikely. The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget earlier this year tried to game out how that kind of GDP growth could happen. Its outlook was not rosy.

"By our estimates, returning capital growth, productivity growth, and prime-age labor force participation to where they were in the 1990s would result in 2.9-percent growth," they wrote. And getting to those levels, they added, would be "an unlikely scenario given recent trends."

In other words, while Trump is celebrating this one quarter of growth, seeing it quarter after quarter after quarter would be a surprise.

Aug 30, 2017|Newsday

President Trump puts onus on Congress to overhaul tax code

Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget president Maya MacGuineas commended Trump’s focus on a fairer and simpler tax code, but said, “Offsetting the cost of tax reform is the central ingredient in creating reform that grows the economy without exploding the debt.”

Aug 29, 2017|McClatchy DC

Harvey could be Ted Cruz’s time to shine. So far he hasn’t

Maya MacGuineas, president of the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, which advocates for bills where projects are paid for, said the idea of finding offsets for emergency spending would be difficult.

MacGuineas said that if leaders like Cruz wanted the bill paid for, they should get in front of the conversation and suggest ways to pay for it.

Aug 25, 2017|The Washington Post

Shutdown update: Experts say it’s more likely than not to happen

Overlay Trump's potential intransigence on a Republican Party that has long brought itself to the brink of a shutdown, and you have more factors leading to a shutdown than at any time since, well, the last one.

“It's completely unpredictable,” said Maya MacGuineas, the president of the bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Budget. “A negotiation that one could have seen the outlines for the resolution just got a mini bomb tossed into it.”

Aug 24, 2017|Bloomberg BNA

OMB Sequester Report Shows Few Good Options for Lawmakers

Ed Lorenzen, senior adviser for the bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, said the OMB report shows how difficult it will be for lawmakers to comply with the 2018 Budget Control Act caps of $549.1 billion for defense spending and $515.7 billion for non-defense.

“Complying with the non-defense discretionary caps for fiscal year 2018 will be harder than is generally understood,” he said.

Aug 23, 2017|Morning Consult

Medicare Is in Deep Trouble: Here’s How to Rescue It

This idea has attracted bipartisan support in the past. Indeed, three decades ago, a group of congressmen from both sides of the aisle proposed the concept — but were one vote short of being able to make a recommendation to Congress. The Bipartisan Policy Center and Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget have also voiced support for a voucher system.

Aug 23, 2017|Snopes

Has the Secret Service Gone 'Broke' Paying Agents to Protect the Trump Family?

The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget – a nonpartisan think tank focused on fiscal and budgetary policy – gave its assessment in a statement reading:

Aug 22, 2017|The New York Times

The Boring Little Budget Office That Trump Hates

In a burst of bipartisanship unusual in today’s Washington, all eight of the previous directors sent a letter in late July to congressional leaders expressing their “strong objection to recent attacks on the integrity and professionalism of the agency.”

More support has come from the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, with which I’m affiliated. “You don’t beat up the referee just because you don’t like the score,” President Maya MacGuineas said in a statement.

Aug 22, 2017|Vanity Fair

Tax cut-hungry G.O.P. stops pretending to care about deficits

Those less enthused by the proposal are deficit hawks and Democrats, who remember a time when Republicans didn’t want to pay for things like the Children’s Health Insurance Program because they cost too much. In a letter to the Senate Budget Committee’s chairman sent earlier this month, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, having caught wind of the idea, wrote, “We are troubled by reports that the Budget Committee is considering using a so-called ‘current policy’ baseline for tax reform legislation. This decision would represent a huge break in precedent, would weaken budget discipline to allow Congress to add over half a trillion dollars to the debt.”

Aug 22, 2017|Bloomberg

GOP Eyes Budget Maneuver to Allow $450 Billion More in Tax Cuts

The switch would risk a backlash from Democrats and deficit hawks. “This decision would represent a huge break in precedent, would weaken budget discipline to allow Congress to add over half a trillion dollars to the debt,” the nonpartisan Committee For a Responsible Federal Budget said in a letter earlier this month.

Aug 17, 2017|LifeZette

The Social Security Crash Is Closer Than You Think

But that surplus turned into a deficit in about 2010. Since then, the money flow has reversed. The general fund props up Social Security. Marc Goldwein, senior vice president and senior policy director at the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, noted that those transfers are projected to total $1.4 trillion over the next decade.

That money can come from only three sources — higher taxes, reduced spending outside of Social Security, or more debt.

"We're basically borrowing the difference," Goldwein said. "That's going to come back to haunt us."

Aug 16, 2017|Bloomberg BNA

No Deals in Sight as Spending, Debt Limit Deadlines Loom

Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, expects leaders will be pondering how to avoid a default as lawmakers are trying to head off a government shutdown, she said.

“Both are really bad—but default is unimaginably bad,” MacGuineas said. “It’s territory we haven’t entered before. I’m an optimist that we will get both of these done. But it’s not a clear path to getting them to the finish line for either of them yet.”

Aug 16, 2017|FactCheck.org

Trump’s Hollow Claim about ‘Inner Cities’

As we have written before, the budget proposal would increase funding for defense, homeland security and veterans affairs, and make cuts in all other executive departments and agencies.

According to an analysis by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, nondefense spending would be cut by about $54 billion, or 10 percent.

Aug 15, 2017|USA Today

Congress is procrastinating on the debt limit, and it's costing taxpayers billions

"I think people should be angry," said Maya MacGuineas, president of the non-partisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. "Our political system is breaking down in ways that are having real economic costs, and most people don't realize what's happening."

Aug 14, 2017|The Associated Press

Lots of Questions Still Hang Over Trump's Tax Plan

Lawmakers could change how the deficit gets calculated in future years by treating tax breaks that are set to expire this year as permanent. This could add $450 billion to the baseline over 10 years, said Marc Goldwein, senior policy director at the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

Aug 14, 2017|Fox Business

Trump's tax overhaul: 4 key questions

Lawmakers could change how the deficit gets calculated in future years by treating tax breaks that are set to expire this year as permanent. This could add $450 billion to the baseline over 10 years, said Marc Goldwein, senior policy director at the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

Aug 13, 2017|Politico

Think Obamacare repeal was hard? Wait for tax reform

On the individual side, the largest tax breaks — like the deductions for home mortgage interest, charitable donations and state and local taxes — are broadly popular and survived previous prunings of the tax code.

"There's so many more losers than in health reform," said Marc Goldwein of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a group that advocates policies to reduce the federal debt. "Tax reform — if they do it right — it's going to affect everyone."

Aug 11, 2017|The Hill

GOP debates retroactive tax cuts

Tax and budget experts also said there are reasons why retroactive tax changes may not create economic growth. They say such changes would add to the cost of the bill, but would not be an effective way to encourage new spending and investments.

“It has all of the costs of the tax cuts but none of the economic benefits,” said Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget President Maya MacGuineas, who added that “you don’t make investments in the rear-view mirror.”

Aug 11, 2017|Bloomberg

Health Insurers Struggle to Win Reprieve of Obamacare Tax

Congress needs to resolve other pressing issues before year’s end, including raising the debt-limit. “It is going to be just fiscal mania all fall,” said Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, which advocates for decreasing the deficit.

As for repealing or delaying the HIT, she said: “I can certainly see this not happening.”

Aug 11, 2017|Fox Business

Debt Ceiling Solutions: Democrats & Republicans could come together

Maya MacGuineas, President of The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, stressed the importance of coming to a consensus on the debt ceiling as soon as possible in an editorial for The Hill. “There are nations that both officially and unofficially use the greenback, and many others peg the value of their money to U.S. dollars. So why, under any calculation, would a politician risk or even threaten to risk this standing by refusing to raise the debt ceiling and chance default on U.S. obligations?” MacGuineas said.

Aug 11, 2017|FactCheck.org

Medicare Scare Tactics

Fiscal groups such as The Concord Coalition and the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget have supported IPAB, saying that it’s necessary to find ways to control growing health care costs and that the board can operate without the political pressure rampant in Congress. 

Aug 10, 2017|Fox Business

Trump White House turning to Democrats for tax reform

On June 15, Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.), policy co-chair of the Blue Dogs, sent a letter to lobbyists, think tanks and advocacy groups, inviting them to listening sessions to give them a chance to express what they would like to see in a bipartisan tax plan. More than 15 groups accepted the request and met with Lipinski in late July, including the AFL-CIO, the Tax Policy Center and the National Federation of Independent Business, according to people familiar with the matter.

The group has also met with representatives from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Maya MacGuineas, President of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, according to Democratic aides.

Aug 10, 2017|Politico

Morning Tax: Trouble in paradise?

CRFB: DON’T DO IT, ENZI! The fiscal hawks at the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget are urging Senate Budget Chairman Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) to just say no to the lure of a current policy baseline, Pro Tax’s Aaron Lorenzo reports. The Senate’s choice between a current policy and current law baseline, which the current House budget has relied on so far, could have a pretty massive impact on tax reform. A current law baseline could force lawmakers to find an extra $460 billion in offsets in a tax overhaul, according to CRFB’s numbers.

Pages