Concord Coalition Pulls Out the Key Dates from GAO's Long-Term Outlook
Today, our friends over at the Concord Coalition wrote an interesting blog in which they pulled out the key fiscal dates from GAO's re-issued long-term projections of the federal budget, deficits, and debt. Take a look at 2019 -- GAO projects federal debt to exceed GDP!
GAO shows two sets of projections: a "Baseline Extended" approach which mirrors CBO's January baseline projections and an "Alternative" simulation which assumes all the tax cuts (except the payroll tax holiday) are fully extended, AMT patches continue, and discretionary spending growth in line with GDP. The figures below follow the Alternative outlook. Take a look, it's quite sobering.
- 2018 -- Net interest costs would exceed Medicare
- 2019 -- Federal debt held by the public would exceed the Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
- 2024 -- Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and net interest would consume all government revenues
- 2025 -- Net interest costs would exceed Social Security
- 2033 -- Debt held by the public would exceed 200 percent of GDP
- 2034 -- Net interest would exceed both Medicare and Medicaid
- 2035 -- The federal deficit would exceed all government revenues
- 2041 -- The deficit would reach 22.5 percent of GDP, more than the entire federal budget in 2008 (22.4 percent of GDP)
- 2042 -- Federal debt held by the public would equal 300 percent of GDP
- 2048 -- Government spending would reach 45.5 percent of GDP, more than twice the size of the budget in 2008 (22.4 percent of GDP)
- 2050 -- Net interest on the debt would exceed all government revenues
- 2050 -- Federal debt held by the public would exceed 400 percent of GDP
- 2056 -- Net interest, at 22.6 percent of GDP, would exceed the size of the entire 2008 federal budget
- 2057 -- Federal debt held by the public would exceed 500 percent of GDP
Of course, debt could never reach heights of 400-500 percent of the economy because our creditors would certainly have stopped lending to us way before that point. But it underscores just how unsustainable our fiscal path is, and how we urgently need leadership from policymakers to address long-term deficits.