Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

Media Coverage

Nov 21, 2017|MSNBC

House Unveils Tax Plan After Delay

Gillian Tett & Maya McGuineas break down the tax plan & appointing new fed chair on Andrea Mitchell Reports.

Nov 2, 2017|The Washington Post

The GOP’s bill is ‘a sensible framework’ — but ‘still a deficit-exploding tax cut’ for the rich and corporations

Budget experts say the GOP’s decision jeopardizes what could otherwise be one of the great legacies of Republican-controlled government: fixing the U.S. tax code and improving the economy.

“I do think this is a sensible framework. It emphasizes the need for corporate reforms and how our tax system works,” said Maya MacGuineas, president of the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. “But this is still a deficit-exploding tax cut at a time when the deficit is at near-record levels.”

Nov 2, 2017|USA Today

Tax plan offered by Republicans meets some GOP resistance

The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget said that of the tax cuts in the plan, $1 trillion would go to businesses over the next 10 years, $200 billion would go to individuals, and $200 billion would go to estates as the current estate tax is phased out over six years.

"It includes a number of gimmicks, including allowing certain provisions to expire, that could ultimately result in more than $1.5 trillion of new deficits," said Maya MacGuineas, the committee's president. "The bill also continues to rely on unrealistic economic growth assumptions to justify its cost."

Nov 21, 2017|Washington Post

The Finance 202: Wall Street to Washington: Tax cuts are 'sugar high' that don't promote long-term growth

Arguably more problematic for the bill’s prospects, the group also projected it would generate $169 billion in revenue through new growth over the next decade, well short of the $1.4 trillion the bill adds to the deficit. (Ditto for recent studies from the Penn-Wharton Budget Model and the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.)

Nov 21, 2017|Washington Post

A Republican ‘win’ on the tax bill will actually be a loss

Andrea Mitchell: "Well, a non-partisan analysis. And the fact is that you’re squeezing it into these rules. But you really do intend for it to be extended down the road which will explode the deficit even farther … We’re not taking a political point of view here. We are actually going by nonpartisan groups like the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, all the impact on the exploding deficit which will impact future generations."

Nov 21, 2017|NPR

How Republicans Can 'Shoehorn' Temporary Tax Cuts In For Good

Critics say doing so also hides the true cost of the legislation. Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, says avoiding those facts is unfair to taxpayers.

"What's somewhat stunning is at a moment when we have basically the highest debt relative to the economy that we've had since we came out of World War II and our deficit is projected to hit a trillion dollars in not too long a time," MacGuineas said, "we're actually talking about cutting taxes and making the deficit larger."

Nov 21, 2017|Politico

Numbers fall short

The $1 trillion in dynamic revenue that Republicans are basically assuming also allowed them to use a lighter touch when it came to eliminating tax incentives than they otherwise might have — which also helps tamp down potential opposition. (The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget noted that both the House and Senate bills cut less than a quarter of the around $18 trillion worth of tax incentives in the system.)

Nov 20, 2017|CNN

GOP uses gimmick to hide true deficit cost of tax bill

The Republican tax reform plan may add much more to the deficit than budgeted with tax cuts that are not permanent. CNN's Brianna Keilar reports

Nov 20, 2017|NPR

Senate Plan For Individual Tax Cuts Could Set Congress On A Collision Course

Senate Republicans would phase out tax cuts for individuals after several years. Critics say they are both setting up future political crises, and hiding the true cost of their tax plan.

Nov 20, 2017|Washington Post

The Finance 202: The competing demands of GOP senators could doom tax overhaul

They’re worried the bill includes more than 35 temporary provisions that Congress has no intention of actually allowing to ever expire, ballooning the cost far beyond its supposed sticker price. He declined to discuss specifics … That will be difficult to address, with the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget estimating the Senate plan includes a whopping $515 billion in budget gimmicks aimed at artificially reducing its cost.

Nov 20, 2017|Bloomberg

Republicans’ Sprint to a Tax Overhaul: Public Votes, Private Talks

“The biggest land mine is the tension between addressing concerns of senators that would increase the cost of the bill and senators who are already concerned about the deficit” -- as well as some provisions in the bill that some regard as “gimmicks” designed to disguise its deficit impacts, said Ed Lorenzen, a senior adviser for the non-partisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. One such ploy, he said: The bill sets individual tax cuts to expire in 2026 -- though party leaders say a future Congress won’t let that happen.

Nov 17, 2017|New York Times

Accounting ‘Gimmicks’ in G.O.P.’s Tax Overhaul Mask Higher Cost, Deficit Hawks Say

According the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, the real cost of the Senate legislation that the Joint Committee on Taxation says will cost $1.41 trillion over a decade would be $2.2 trillion if all the temporary changes were made permanent. The group estimates that the nation’s debt, which has surpassed $20 trillion, would exceed the size of the economy by 2028 under the plan — a level the United States has not reached since World War II.

Nov 17, 2017|Wall Street Journal

GOP Tax Plans: Why Your Tax Cut Might Expire

When tax cuts expire, their cost vanishes from official scores of the cost, even if Republicans actually want and expect to extend them. If some proposals are extended, the long-run actual cost of the policies could be larger than the $1.5 trillion on paper.

The new Senate bill has $515 billion of such maneuvers, according to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. The House has $511 billion of them, according to the group.

Democrats are criticizing Republicans for some of these expirations, particularly the proposal to let individual tax cuts lapse while making corporate tax cuts permanent.

Nov 17, 2017|Washington Post

First, Republicans want tax cuts. Next, they’ll try gutting Medicare and Social Security.

The stage is being set for an all-out attack on the welfare state the minute a tax cut is signed into law. Per an analysis by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, the Republican budget already assumes $4 trillion in cuts to mandatory spending over 10 years, a euphemism for Social Security and Medicare. But no action has yet been taken to implement the spending cuts.

Nov 17, 2017|Bloomberg

House Republicans Pass Their Version Tax Overhaul

House Republicans passed their version of legislation to overhaul the U.S. tax code by slashing the corporate tax rate, lowering tax burdens for most individuals and adding an estimated $1.4 trillion to the federal deficit over the next decade. Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget President Maya MacGuineas weighs in on "Bloomberg Daybreak: Australia."

Nov 17, 2017|PBS

Who really benefits from GOP’s tax overhaul is battle point as House passes its bill

Judy Woodruff: "The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, bipartisan, they have taken a look at the House bill. They are saying — and I’m quoting — 'It’s based on predictions of magical economic growth that defy history and all credible analyses.'"

Nov 17, 2017|Politico

Big win for Ryan but the fight goes on

Via the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget’s Maya MacGuineas: “The House approved debt-financed tax cuts based on predictions of magical economic growth that defy history and all credible analyses.”

Nov 17, 2017|Politico

Tax Reform Roadblocks Emerge in Senate

“There are several of us that are trying to figure out a way to make sure this doesn’t hurt us relative to deficits,” he said Thursday. “We’re looking globally at the whole thing and trying to do what we can to make it more fiscally palatable.”

That will be difficult to address, with the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget estimating the Senate plan includes a whopping $515 billion in budget gimmicks aimed at artificially reducing its cost.

Nov 16, 2017|The New York Times

Bill Signals Top Tax Priority of G.O.P. Is to Help Corporations

Canceling those looming increases would further add to the federal budget deficit, if the move is not paired with spending cuts. Middle-class families planning ahead can imagine two possible consequences from that decision: Either an immediate increase in their taxes eight years from now, or an explosion in federal budget deficits, which could necessitate spending cuts to safety net programs like Social Security and Medicare.

“The bill reflects talking out of both sides of your mouth at the same time — neither of which is leading to good policy,” said Maya MacGuineas, the president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

Nov 16, 2017|CNN Money

Senate tax cuts are permanent for businesses but temporary for you

And just as lawmakers in 2012 chose to make the majority of Bush tax cuts "permanent," Republicans are likely banking on a future Congress to do the same in 2025.

"Does anyone really believe Congress will allow the individual tax cuts to sunset in eight years? This is an obvious ruse to hide very real costs and make more room for debt-financed cuts and giveaways," said Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

Nov 15, 2017|The New York Times

Republicans May Use Cuts in Entitlement Programs to Reduce Deficit

If Republicans decide to try to circumvent the pay-as-you-go rule, it could be taken as a sign that they are not serious about deficit reduction. For Democrats, it could be enticing to show the public the consequences of Republican-driven tax cuts, but it would be difficult for them to essentially support cuts to a government program that provides health insurance for the elderly.

“At the end of the day, it is somewhat akin to the debt limit that no one actually wants to let it happen,” said Ed Lorenzen, a senior adviser for the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, who noted that spending would eventually have to be addressed if Republicans used the deficit to finance tax cuts.

Nov 15, 2017|CBS News

The House GOP tax bill: Will it pass? The whip count so far

Another consideration is the use of reconciliation to move the bill. It gives Republicans the ability to pass the measure with a simple majority in the Senate, but creates some hurdles, most notably the need to limit the cost of the bill to what was set by the budget resolution. The Senate and House agreed on a bill that would allow them to add $1.5 trillion to the debt (which budget watchdogs like the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget assess as already excessive). 

Nov 15, 2017|The Washington Post

Even the White House seems to be admitting tax cuts won’t pay for themselves

Many mainstream economists agree that reducing taxes would stimulate the economy somewhat as businesses and families go out and spend more. They also say the government would get additional tax revenue, but not nearly enough to offset what was lost from the lower rates.

The economy would have to grow 6 to 8 percent faster in the next decade to fully offset the costs of the bill, according to numerous respected economists, including those at the Tax Policy Center, the Tax Foundation, the Committee for a Responsible Fiscal Budget and the Penn Wharton Budget Model. The White House is estimating only 3 to 5 percent growth.

Nov 15, 2017|The Washington Post

‘Fiddler on the Roof’ explains the GOP tax bill. Here’s how.

The House and Senate measures differ in details, but both play the same hide-the-cost games to disguise the real price — the House to the tune of $400 billion, the Senate clocking in at $515 billion, according to the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. By the way, those numbers understate things, because they don’t include the cost of paying interest on the additional debt.

Nov 15, 2017|NBC

Some Senate Republicans concerned about lumping health care in tax plan

After failing three times to repeal Obamacare, Senate Republicans are trying part of it again, but the move has some moderate Republicans nervous.

Nov 15, 2017|San Francisco Chronicle

Editorial: Republicans’ faith-based tax cuts

Though Republicans cite the growth that followed President Ronald Reagan’s tax reforms, which took place when top rates were much higher, economic expansion has not reliably followed tax reductions and has sometimes accompanied increases. As the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget notes, studies suggest growth will offset at most about a third of the tax cuts, partly because adding public debt does countervailing economic harm.

Nov 15, 2017|Yahoo! Finance

Those Republican tax cuts will become tax hikes

If Republicans were being completely forthright, they’d acknowledge this. They’d admit there’s a large risk corporate tax cuts won’t trickle down to ordinary workers, as a roomful of CEOs seemed to indicate at a recent Wall Street Journal conference. They’d confirm analysis by groups such as the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget showing that between 65% and 80% of the net tax cut will accrue to businesses, with only a small portion applying to working- and middle-class taxpayers. They might even stick their neck out and point out that the federal tax burden on the typical family has declined slightly in recent years, suggesting there’s no urgent need to cut taxes for most individuals.

Nov 15, 2017|Huffington Post

Republicans Aren’t Sweating The Procedural Obstacles To Tax Reform

Marc Goldwein, a policy expert with the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, complained that neither Democrats nor Republicans seem to care about massive budget deficits when they’re in power. He would rather see Republicans reduce the deficit impact of their tax bill than just wave it away with a separate piece of legislation.

“It just seems like in Washington fiscal responsibility is a weapon, not an ideology,” Goldwein said.

Nov 15, 2017|Axios

GOP tax plan could add more to deficit than analyses suggest

The nonpartisan think tank Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget says extending the sunsets in the future would "add over $350 billion to the cost of the bill" and bring the deficit impact closer to $2 trillion. A Penn Wharton Budget Model analysis similarly found the plan would add more than $2 trillion over 10 years.

Nov 15, 2017|Salon

Social Security on the chopping block: How the GOP plans to fix its own budget mess

The Congressional Budget Office "warned that the tax bill could set off an arcane budget rule" which would drastically cut funding for Medicare over the next decade and as much as $25 billion next year, according to Times:

The pay-as-you-go law requires that legislation that adds to the federal deficit be paid for with spending cuts or other offsets. If that does not happen, automatic cuts to programs like Medicare kick in. The Medicare cuts, which are capped at 4 percent of the program’s annual spending, could reach almost a half trillion dollars over 10 years, according to the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.