The balanced budget constitutional amendment (H.J. Res. 2) expected to be considered on the House floor this week is a very dangerous proposal that would have dire consequences for the economy and American families. It is the next step in the Republican majority’s dangerous plan to starve the government of revenues and use the resulting deficits as an excuse to call for massive reductions in programs that millions of Americans rely on.
The Budget and Economic Outlook released today by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) shows a deteriorating federal fiscal situation, with deficits nearing $1 trillion in 2019 and continuing to rise thereafter. For the GOP, this is all just part of their dangerous plan to starve the government of revenues and use the resulting deficits as an excuse to call for massive reductions in Medicare, Medicaid, and other programs that millions of Americans rely on.
“Sequester” typically refers to the cancellation of budgetary resources after enactment. Congress has acted several times to prevent the harmful “sequester” cuts to discretionary programs. The most recent of these actions was the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (BBA18), which not only prevents discretionary sequester cuts for 2018 and 2019, but also allows additional funding. The sequester will return in 2020 under current law.
The President’s budget for 2019 once again relies on phony economic assumptions to make its deficit projections look less ominous. Even with the phony economics, other deceptions, and reckless cuts to crucial programs Americans rely on, the budget cannot hide the drastically deteriorated deficit outlook resulting from enactment of the Republican tax scam.
The highest-profile new initiative in the President’s budget is a proposal to increase federal investment in infrastructure. The plan is billed as incentivizing at least $1.5 trillion in new infrastructure investment. If the budget were fully implemented, the end result would likely be a reduction in federal support for transportation infrastructure.
The President’s budget for 2019 shows the Administration is not working on behalf of rural America. It presents a long list of broken promises to rural communities, which disproportionately suffer high and persistent poverty. The President’s budget will make life harder for the millions of Americans living outside of major cities, who are struggling to get by.
The President’s budget once again fails to recognize that our security depends on much more than military might and building walls. This budget hollows out critical areas to effective security, leaving the country more vulnerable.
By cutting vital grant programs that states and localities cannot backfill, the President’s 2019 budget puts Americans, particularly low-income Americans, at risk and threatens the economic vitality of our nation.
The President’s budget for 2019 provides a revealing insight into the Administration’s values. After spending last year working with Congressional Republicans to enact an extremely irresponsible tax cut that mostly benefits people who already have a lot of wealth and power, the Administration has produced a budget with damaging spending cuts that will hit working families hard for years to come.
In the weeks since Congressional Republicans jammed through their tax scam late last year, non‑partisan experts continue to provide evidence that the law is a huge giveaway to the rich that will leave families with little benefit as federal deficits swell.