If you’re looking for an insightful, big-picture overview of the Obama administration’s 2013 budget plan, you would be hard-pressed to find a better place to start than a statement released this afternoon by the President of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Robert Greenstein.
Greenstein’s statement makes a key point that should put to rest some of the deficit hysteria that’s already accompanied the release of the new budget plan: the Obama administration’s budget would stabilize the federal debt over the next decade through a balanced mix of spending reductions and additional revenues.
The whole statement is worth reading, but here are the top-line messages:
The President’s budget would, if enacted, make significant progress in reducing deficits, although policymakers would have to take further steps, especially for future decades. Under its economic assumptions, it would achieve what most budget analysts, and all recent bipartisan commissions or panels, have identified as the crucial fiscal goal for the decade ahead — stabilizing the debt so that it no longer rises faster than the economy.
The budget either achieves or approaches this key fiscal target for the coming decade with several trillion dollars in deficit reduction, through a balanced combination of spending cuts and revenue increases. In total, deficit reduction over the coming ten years (fiscal years 2013-2022) — through a combination of the proposals in the budget and measures enacted in 2011 — would equal about $4.3 trillion.
Indeed, the composition of the deficit reduction under the Obama budget is actually to the conservative side of the Bowles-Simpson plan — it raises significantly less in revenues and reduces security spending much less than Bowles-Simpson would.
We will have more analysis of President Obama’s 2013 budget forthcoming in the days ahead. Stay tuned!