Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Budget Forecast Sees End to Sharp Deficit Declines

By JONATHAN WEISMAN, NYT, JAN. 26, 2015

WASHINGTON — The federal budget deficit will continue to inch downward through next year, but even with the economy on an upward trajectory, the government’s red ink will begin to rise in 2017 and expand with an aging population, the Congressional Budget Office said Monday.

The new budget projections effectively signal the end of the steep decline in deficits as the economy climbed out of the recession. Lawmakers now face a familiar and politically vexing problem: What to do about increases in Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security spending that reflect the nation’s demographics, not its economic health?

“The past will catch up to us no matter how fast we run from it,” said Senator Michael B. Enzi, Republican of Wyoming, the new chairman of the Senate Budget Committee.

The forecast might not change President Obama’s policy proposals, which will come out on Monday, but it will fortify a Republican Congress’s resolve to pass budgets this spring that would fundamentally reorder health care spending, preserve tough spending caps and force Washington to at least look at Social Security. Democrats will say those spending plans are contradicted by efforts to overhaul the tax code without producing any more tax revenue.

And a budget season that will begin in earnest with the release of the president’s tax-and-spending plan for the fiscal year 2016 will underscore a partisan divide over post-recession policy making.

(More here.)

1 Comments:

Blogger Tom Koch said...

We will need grownups on both sides of the aisle to remedy our financial situation and avoid becoming another Greece.

7:40 AM  

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