Center for Effective Government Statement on Agreement to Reopen the Government and Avoid Default

WASHINGTON, Oct. 16, 2013—The bipartisan deal passed by the Senate reopens the government and avoids a default on U.S. debt. However, by only funding the government through January, it sets up another fight over funding the government in the next several months.

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The Debt Ceiling: Why You Should Care and How It Came to Be

A self-inflicted economic disaster looms on the horizon. Failure to approve a routine measure allowing the U.S. to manage its finances and pay the bills it already owes would have devastating effects. Increasing the debt ceiling is the only way to avoid a destabilization of the American economy.

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Hang Together or Hang Separately: The Battle Against Austerity

Sequestration's automatic spending cuts were back in the news over the past few weeks. For a brief time, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) had to furlough employees, leading to nationwide flight delays. At roughly the same time, a researcher exposed major flaws in one of the key texts serving as an intellectual buttress to global austerity policies. While those fighting against economically damaging austerity measures received a boost from these events, many fiscal policy battles and pitfalls still lie ahead.

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How Do Giant Corporations Get Away with "Legal" Tax Cheating?

 

See how multinational corporations lobby to write their own tax laws. From We're Not Broke, the story of U.S. corporations dodging billions of dollars in income tax, and how seven fed-up Americans take their frustration to the streets ... and vow to make the corporations pay their fair share.

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House Budget Plans Do Not Reflect Americans' Views on Public Investments

Sequestration's automatic cuts to federal spending are beginning to sting in communities across the country, and two of the four major congressional budget plans put forth this year are at odds with public opinion on specific areas of public investments, according to a Center for Effective Government analysis. As the Pew Research Center found in a pre-sequestration poll in February, most Americans say they support maintaining or increasing funding for specific federal programs, including education, Social Security, and Medicare.

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Battle Lines Await an (Unlikely) Budgetary "Grand Bargain"

With Congress and the Obama administration still divided over tax revenues, the possibility of a "grand bargain" on another major deficit reduction package seems increasingly small.

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Undoing Sequestration

Across-the-board federal spending cuts, called "sequestration," have begun. What can be done to undo this damaging budget policy? One of the primary barriers to fixing sequestration is that it is playing out much like the metaphor of a boiling frog. According to the metaphor, if a frog is placed in a pan of boiling water, it will quickly jump out. But if it is placed in a pan of water that is room temperature, and then only slowly heated to a boil, the frog will not notice the danger and will be slowly cooked to death.

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Sequestration Standoff

As March 1 approaches, across-the-board federal spending cuts, called sequestration, appear almost certain to occur. Republicans and Democrats are not negotiating to resolve the looming crisis. Neither seems sufficiently motivated to compromise.

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Passing Over the "Fiscal Cliff" in Early 2013 Seems Increasingly Likely

While the outcome of the 2012 election will still ultimately decide next steps on the federal budget, a status-quo election that leaves Democrats in control of the presidency and Republicans in control of the House of Representatives seems likely to produce a budget stalemate that will last through the rest of the year and will trigger a "fiscal cliff" of spending cuts and tax increases in the new year.

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House FY 2013 Budget: Another Nail in the Budget Control Act Coffin

Leading up to the release of Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) fiscal year (FY) 2013 budget resolution proposal, the question has not been whether House Republicans will adhere to the federal spending agreement reached in last year’s debt ceiling deal (they will not), but how far below the previously agreed-upon figures they will go. The House GOP’s abandonment of this agreement is yet another example of actions taken to undermine not only the spirit but also the letter of last summer’s deal.

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