CBO Updates Budget Estimates: Massive Deficits to Grow

The Congressional Budget Office today released its semi-annual update on the nation's budget situation. The report confirms massive deficits for the current year and beyond. In addition, the report shows that deficits will not be "cut in half" in the next five years, as projected by the Bush administration.

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Mid-session Review Presents Misleading View of Nation's Finances

The White House's Office of Management and Budget recently (and belatedly) released its annual budgetary "Mid-Session Review," which attempts to put a positive spin on massive and worsening deficits, as well as the lowest level of revenue in nearly a half century.

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National Debt Limit Countdown

On August 2, Treasury Secretary John Snow urged Congress to raise the federal debt limit without delay, and warned that the limit will be reached by late September or early October.

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Mid-Session Review Confirms Continuation of Record Deficits

Washington, D.C., July 30, 2004 - The White House's Office of Management and Budget today belatedly released its annual budgetary "Mid-Session Review," which attempts to put a positive spin on massive and worsening deficits and the lowest level of revenue in a half century. Download full press release (.pdf)

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OMB Fails to Meet Another Deadline

The Office of Management and Budget is required to produce a "Mid-Session Review" by July 15 of each year. However, the mid-session budget review has still not been issued.

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Should 'Middle-Class' Tax Cuts be Extended, Offset or Not?

The political reality, especially in an election year, makes extension of the so-called "middle-class" tax cuts very likely. Hardly anyone is arguing against extending these cuts, as long as they are paid for. However, there are very good arguments why, even If the cost of the extension is offset, extension of these tax cuts is not supportable.

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Tax Cut Extensions Possible

We reported earlier that Senate Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley (R-IA) wanted to delay until September consideration of extending the "middle-class" tax cuts -- marriage penalty, expansion of the 10% income tax bracket, and the $1000 child tax credit -- that will expire on December 31. However, the Bureau of National Affairs (BNA) reported July 12 that House and Senate leaders plan to consider the cuts late this week.

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Appropriations in November?

The House has been steadily moving forward with appropriations bills, in spite of the tight cap on appropriations spending for 2004; but in the Senate only one bill -- Defense -- has passed, and only one other bill -- Homeland Security -- has even gotten through a full Senate committee. None has made it to the Senate floor.

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Good Riddance to Bad Policy: Budget Enforcement Bill Dies

A conservative effort to severely limit domestic programs was soundly defeated in the House last week. The so-called "Spending Control Act of 2004" failed by a vote of 146-268.

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Beware of Bad Economic Policy - The Balanced Budget Amendment Set to Return

The long-ago defeated proposal for a balanced budget amendment is rearing its ugly head once again. Unable to pass a budget this year and desperate to create the appearance of being fiscally responsible, the Republican leaders in the House of Representatives are promising a vote on the measure.

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