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New White House Report Shows Deficit Projections Have Doubled

Jul 17, 2018 | Budgets & Projections

For Immediate Release

The White House Office of Management and Budget released its annual mid-session review Friday, updating deficit projections in its fiscal year 2019 budget request. The report projected deficits will reach $1.085 trillion in FY 2019 under their budget, which is double the $526 billion called for in their FY 2018 budget. The following is a statement from Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget:

This past Friday afternoon, the White House released a little-noticed update with a very big trillion-dollar admission: thanks to recent tax cuts and spending hikes, their deficit projections have doubled.

This is a striking acknowledgement following almost two years of claims that economic growth unleashed by these policies will wipe deficits away.

Last time the nation experienced trillion-dollar deficits – during a serious economic downturn, no less – lawmakers took the issue seriously. PAYGO laws were established, a fiscal commission was formed, new discretionary spending caps were implemented, and policymakers entered a multi-year debate on how best to bring down long-term debt levels.

This time around, with the emergence of trillion-dollar deficits during a period of economic strength – when we should be saving for future downturns – few seem to even take notice. On our current course, debt will overtake the size of the entire economy in about a decade, and interest will be the largest government program in three decades or less. This will weaken both our economy and our role in the world.

It is time to end the debt denial and stop sweeping damaging deficits under the rug like they don’t matter. Only real leadership and tough choices will fix this problem.

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For more information contact Patrick Newton, press secretary, at newton@crfb.org.