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The federal debt is an issue that needs to be addressed. Virtually everyone agrees on this.

But how big of an issue? And how should it be addressed? These are questions that deserve more robust debate than they’re receiving. As evidence of this fact, check out these recent articles by two of the nation’s most astute economic observers in which debt worries are put in their rightful place. Read More

NC Budget and Tax Center

In their appearance at Wake Forest last night, Erskine Bowles and former Senator Alan Simpson presented their long-standing plan for federal deficit reduction and joined their voices to the growing bipartisan chorus reiterating the importance of finding a balanced approach to long-term federal deficit reduction that includes new revenues and targeted spending cuts.

While the Simpson-Bowles plan isn’t perfect, it represents a reasonable starting point for “putting everything on the table” when it comes to federal deficit reduction, and especially the importance of including new revenues.  It opens the door to a fiscally responsible alternative to the spending-cuts only approach to budgeting embodied in sequestration—the looming $1.2 trillion in across-the-board spending cuts to federal programs like Head Start, education, R&D, and our nation’s military projected to cost North Carolina thousands of jobs.

Congress should build upon the Simpson-Bowles plan by replacing these sequestration cuts with new revenues created by allowing the Bush tax cuts on incomes over $250,000 per year to expire in January. This approach will negatively affect just 1.4% of North Carolina’s families by reducing their tax cut and will generate more than $1 trillion in new revenues by 2023—an important down-payment on reducing the Federal budget deficit.