Center for Funding America’s Future

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State and Local Budget Cuts Jeopardize U.S. Recovery 

As the coronavirus crisis grinds on, state and local leaders are warning of a looming fiscal meltdown. Unlike the federal government, most state and local governments are required to balance their budgets, so they may need to implement painful budget cuts as unemployment soars and as tax collections dry up. Cuts are not inevitable, but…

Blog: Connectivity is Everything

All the Distance Learning Tools in the World Don’t Matter if Kids Can’t Get Online Now that distance learning is virtually the only learning happening, all levels of government must shift into high gear to ensure that every child in America who needs Internet connectivity has it. School districts and charter schools across the country…

House Democrats Have The Right Coronavirus Response

The outbreak of COVID-19 (commonly known as coronavirus) has created a global market downturn and raised the prospect that the United States could enter its first recession since the 2008 financial crisis. Last night, President Donald Trump and U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi offered two competing approaches for securing both the health and economic security…

PPI's Ben Ritz Talks Social Security with Ric Edelman

The Director of PPI’s Center for Funding America’s Future, Ben Ritz, joined personal-finance advisor Ric Edelman on his nationally syndicated radio show to discuss the challenges facing Social Security, their role in the 2020 election, and PPI's proposal to strengthen the program for future generations. Listen to the interview below and read our full plan…

On the Blog: If it's Competition for the Goose, Why Not Competition for the Gander?

Many advocates of school choice have slammed Senator Elizabeth Warren for her new education plan, released last week. We have joined them, on Twitter. But few have pointed out the inconsistency between Warren’s embrace of competition in the rest of her plan—and in many of her economic plans—and her embrace of district monopolies in public…

PPI Previews Blueprint for Funding America's Future at Fiscal Summit

For the past eight months, PPI’s Center for Funding America’s Future has been developing a fiscal blueprint that would restore America’s commitment to public investment, rebalance the intergenerational compact for 21st-century demographics, and implement pro-growth tax reform that rewards work over wealth. We previewed the plan yesterday at the Peter G. Peterson Foundation’s 10th annual…

Statement on the Passing of Alice Rivlin

America lost a titan today with the passing of Alice Rivlin. Simply put, Alice was the mother of modern fiscal analysis. The Congressional Budget Office only exists as it does today because of her strong leadership as its founding director. Alice resisted political pressure and established the CBO as Washington’s non-partisan umpire of fiscal debates,…

Ritz for Forbes, "Keep the White Walkers Out of Our Tax Code"

Millions of Americans watched the 70th episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones last Sunday to see who would win the ultimate battle between the people of Westeros and the undead army of the White Walkers. But there is another undead threat here in America that has gotten far less attention, one that marches not on our lands…

Valentine for BlackPressUSA, "Developing a universal enrollment system for all Memphis public schools"

On any given day, you can find Sarah Carpenter organizing parents in the Memphis area. A single mother of four daughters and 13 grandchildren, Carpenter was an advocate long before becoming co-founder and CEO of The Memphis Lift, which she describes as “a parent organization run by parents, for parents.” Born and raised in North…

A Strong First Year for PPI's Center for Funding America's Future

As the Progressive Policy Institute’s Center for Funding America’s Future wraps up its first year, we want to thank everyone who followed and supported our work. Below you’ll find a compilation of our contributions to the public discourse in 2018. Through op-eds, blog posts, media interviews, research reports, engagement with elected officials, and public forums…

Ben Ritz Discusses New PPI Report on Two Radio Interviews

Director of PPI's Center for Funding America's Future, Ben Ritz, participated in two radio interviews this week to discuss his new report, Defunding America's Future: The Squeeze on Public Investment in the United States. The report explains how short-sighted fiscal policy is undermining critical investments in education, infrastructure and scientific research that are integral to the long-term…

New Report: Washington Is Crippling America's Economic Future

Public investment spending could fall to lowest level in modern history by 2026  WASHINGTON — Young Americans are having their future mortgaged by Washington lawmakers who are slashing critical public investments in future generations while simultaneously burying these generations under a mountain of debt, according to a new report published today by the Center for…

Republicans Double Down on Deepening Deficits

It’s official: House Republicans are campaigning on a pledge to increase the federal budget deficit. It was just 10 months ago that they enacted a package of ostensibly temporary tax cuts that is projected to increase deficits by roughly $2 trillion over the next decade. This week, they offered a series of proposals dubbed "Tax Reform…

CBO Report Shows That We Really Can't Afford All These Tax Cuts

When the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office published its Long-term Budget Outlook in June, it estimated that the national debt relative to the size of the economy would nearly double over the next 30 years – from 78 percent of gross domestic product today to 152 percent of GDP in 2048. Yesterday, a new report from CBO…

Bledsoe & Ritz for The Hill, "Democrats must bridge the generational divide to prevent climate and budget crises"

Amid the daily drama of President Trump’s tweets and scandals, it can be hard to focus on the most important issues for our future. An unfortunate consequence of this purposeful turmoil is that few serious solutions are being offered for addressing two of the greatest threats facing the United States: runaway climate change and unsustainable…

New Projections Make Clear We Can't Afford the Trump Agenda

Yesterday, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office published their first long-term budget outlook since the passage of last year’s tax cuts and February’s spending increases. In contrast to April’s budget and economic outlook, which made budget projections only for the next decade, the long-term budget outlook offers budget projections over the next 30 years – and…

Before Expanding Medicare, We Have to Pay for Current Beneficiaries

It’s no secret that the American health care system is far from perfect. The United States spends a higher percentage of our gross domestic product on health care than any other country despite having comparable outcomes. And although the Affordable Care Act successfully reduced the percentage of uninsured Americans by almost half between 2010 and…

Trustees Reports Highlight Challenges Facing Medicare and Social Security

The new reports released yesterday by the trustees for Social Security and Medicare warn that both programs face a growing gap between scheduled benefits and the dedicated revenue sources that finance them. If nothing is done to address the shortfalls in these programs, they will pose a grave threat to both the beneficiaries who depend…

CBO Analysis Exposes Trump's Faulty Fiscal Policy

President Trump’s most recent budget proposal was widely panned when it was released in February for being both fiscally irresponsible and dependent on unrealistic economic assumptions. An analysis published last week by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office confirms these criticisms were valid and highlights the significant difference between the Trump administration’s approach to fiscal policy…

Are Democrats Really the Party of Fiscal Responsibility? (Part 2)

Earlier this week, we published a blog exploring the relationship between budget deficits and unemployment under both Democratic and Republican presidents over the last 40 years. Our analysis found that deficits under Democratic presidents rose and fell with unemployment (which is what should happen when adhering to responsible counter-cyclical fiscal policy), while deficits under Republican…

A Tax Day Review of Trump's Tax Cuts

When taxpayers file their tax returns this time next year, four out of five will likely see a smaller tax liability than they do today, due to major tax legislation enacted last year. But these savings to taxpayers will be nothing more than a mirage: after accounting for the true cost of this legislation, what…

Are Democrats Really the Party of Fiscal Responsibility? Yes, But...

Over the weekend, David Leonhardt published an op-ed in the New York Times entitled “The Democrats Are the Party of Fiscal Responsibility.” Leonhardt argues that Democrats get insufficient credit for the fact that federal budget deficits drop when their party holds the White House while deficits rise when Republicans take control.  We believe Leonhardt is…

PPI Analysis of CBO's 2018 Budget and Economic Outlook

The latest report published yesterday by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office shows the United States faces a rapidly deteriorating fiscal situation. Beginning in 2020, the federal government will spend over $1 trillion more than it raises in revenue every single year in perpetuity. The government has to borrow money to finance these soaring deficits and…

House GOP's Balanced Budget Amendment Proposal is a Sham

On Thursday, House Republicans will vote on a constitutional amendment proposed by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) that would require the federal government to balance its budget every year. The vote, which is virtually guaranteed to fall short of the two-thirds super majority necessary for passage, is nothing more than a cynical ploy to give the…

New CBO Report Highlights the Cost of Trump's First Year

WASHINGTON — Ben Ritz, director of the Center for Funding America’s Future at the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI), today released the following statement after new fiscal projections released by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) this afternoon demonstrated the enormous cost of policies adopted during the first year of Trump's presidency: "The national debt is now on…

Even After Budget Deal, Discretionary Spending Remains Low

Although February’s bipartisan budget deal significantly increased discretionary spending, the portion of the federal budget appropriated annually by Congress remains near record-low levels. Both defense and non-defense (domestic) discretionary spending are falling relative to the size of the economy – a trend that has serious long-term implications for our nation’s ability to make critical public…

Senate Democrats' Deficit-Neutral Infrastructure Plan Clarifies the Cost of Tax Cuts

Senate Democrats yesterday unveiled an ambitious $1 trillion infrastructure proposal that would invest in everything from roads and railways to hospitals and high-speed broadband. And in sharp contrast to recent proposals by the Trump administration, this new Democratic proposal includes a plan to fully pay for itself. The proposal calls for repealing three elements of…

New Analysis Highlights Dire Fiscal Situation

New projections from the non-partisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget show that Donald Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress have plunged the United States back into trillion-dollar deficits at a time when most economists believe we should be whittling them down. According to CRFB’s estimates, which are based on a methodology similar to the one…

Six Charts That Reveal the Absurdity of the Trump Budget

The president’s budget proposal – the official document that lays out his administration’s tax and spending wish list – usually contains a mix of dubious economic assumptions and ambitious policy ideas that are dead on arrival in Congress. But while the president’s budget is usually somewhat estranged from reality, Donald Trump’s Fiscal Year 2019 Budget…