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Budget Archive

Our Election Mandate: Bring No-Nonsense Governing, Regularity to the Federal Funding Process | Commentary

“Elections have consequences” is an oft-used phrase following a watershed election, and given the large Republican gains in the Senate, House and in states across the country, this year has clearly been no exception. I believe a major “consequence” of this election is a loud and clear mandate from the American people for Washington to stop the gridlock, work together across ideological lines and start producing real accomplishments on their behalf.

Emergency Spending Requests Weighed in Omnibus Talks

White House emergency spending requests are taking a back seat to a debate about whether to use a wrap-up fiscal 2015 spending package to block executive actions on immigration.

As Time Runs Out, House Leaders Spar on Funding, Immigration

House GOP leaders are taking a wait-and-see approach as their conference has begun splitting into factions over how to fund the federal government and whether to bring immigration into the mix.

GOP Mulls Next CBO Director

Flush from their capture of the Senate, Republicans in both chambers are reviewing more than a dozen potential candidates to succeed Douglas W. Elmendorf as director of the Congressional Budget Office after his term expires Jan. 3.

Realistic Budget Rules Would Save Taxpayers Billions | Commentary

A failure to account properly can lead a business to fail. Our government’s failure to count properly is costing taxpayers billions. The federal budget is one area where our counting system has gotten way off track. There are simple policy solutions — such as replacing the dollar bill with the dollar coin — that could make government work better and more efficiently, but outdated one-size-fits-all rules are masking the true, long-term savings of the switch to the dollar coin.

Rogers Begins Work on Possible Lame Duck Omnibus

Away from the din of the campaign, House and Senate appropriations staffers are quietly laying the groundwork for an ambitious wrap-up spending package in the lame duck.

Use Common Sense to Save Cents | Commentary

From time to time, we seem briefly aware of our skyrocketing national debt, but usually we forget we’ve been on the largest spending spree in American history. And without a strong economy to help generate tax revenues to pay the bills, our national debt has grown by trillions of dollars in only a few short years.

Income Inequality Hurts States, Dampens GDP Growth

Standard & Poor’s says income inequality is becoming a problem for state governments.

Lawmakers Disagree on Discretionary Defense Cap

As is typical in the defense authorization process, House and Senate lawmakers made differing choices over key policy and military hardware issues. Both bills, however, would adhere to the $514 billion discretionary cap for fiscal 2015 Pentagon base spending established by the Ryan-Murray budget.

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Defense Authorization Again Headed Toward Last-Minute Dealmaking

It was probably wishful thinking on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s part when he added floor action on the annual defense policy bill to his crowded to-do list for the abbreviated September session.

Congress' To-Do List: Border Funding, Stopgap

Democrats and the Obama administration will continue to push for more border funding when Congress returns from recess, but a short legislative calendar and a growing rift between the parties on immigration may leave the upcoming continuing resolution as perhaps their only shot for securing additional dollars before the elections.

The Urgent Need to Preserve the Tomahawk Missile System | Commentary

Before summer recess, the Senate roundly rejected the White House’s attempt to kill off one of this country’s most storied missile technologies.

GOP Threatens Immigration Order Payback Via CR

House Republican leaders are aiming to move a “clean” stopgap spending bill next week with as little drama as possible.

Stopgap Could Mean More Juggling for Border Agencies

Days after Congress skipped out of Washington for recess last month, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced plans to shift some $400 million in funding from other agency programs to manage the Southwest border crisis.

The Congressional Earmark Ban: the Real Bridge to Nowhere | Commentary

In 2005, a $223 million earmark to fund the construction of a bridge from Ketchikan, Alaska, to the tiny island of Gravina, Alaska, captured national attention. The earmark, which was included in a bill to provide funding for reconstruction efforts after Hurricane Katrina, rightfully drew scorn and ridicule from across the country. In 2007, Congress stripped the earmark.

Congressional Partisanship May Delay Funding for Israel's Iron Dome Missile Defense System

It would be tough to find anybody in Congress, from either party, opposed to sending Israel more money for its Iron Dome air defense system, which has been instrumental in protecting the country from rockets fired by Hamas. But the additional $225 million Israel has requested for the anti-rocket system could be held up until September, as the parties spar over how Congress should distribute the money.

Road Closed to Investor Cash for Infrastructure Funding

Pension funds are slowly starting to take a look at investing in infrastructure projects, raising hopes among transportation advocates and lawmakers that the country’s roads and bridges could see an infusion of private cash.

The Two Budgeteers: All for One in Effort to Update Budget Act | Commentary

Since ratification of the constitutional authority given to Congress to tax and spend in 1788, our government has struggled to manage the federal budget. After numerous failed budget concepts and commissions, the Budget Act was finally enacted in 1974 to establish the modern-day budget process. Almost exactly 40 years since the Budget Act was signed into law, there is growing consensus among policymakers and budget observers that the system no longer functions as intended.

Emergency Supplemental Distracts From Regular Order

The Obama administration’s emergency supplemental appropriations request is further complicating efforts to move fiscal 2015 spending bills, soaking up time and energy during a critical work period with an already long to-do list.

With Senate Action Stalled, Continuing Resolution Looks Likely for Fall

With the Senate’s regular appropriations work all but dead and an unexpected supplemental spending request for child migrants consuming time and energy on Capitol Hill, a government-wide continuing resolution now appears to be a near certainty for the fall.




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