Budget Matters Blog

Entries By Jo Comerford


Social Security and Medicare: Ties that bind

Nearly every American is intimately connected with the earned benefits Social Security and Medicare – first as a contributor then as a recipient. Nearly 90% of us indicated that we’re in favor of taking strong measures to preserve the long-term stability of both programs.


Sequestration - Useless Baggage

They’ve hit a new low. Citing significant concerns about long lines at airports and flight delays caused by the furlough of air-traffic controllers, Congress let the Federal Aviation Administration override strict sequestration rules and redirect funds within its budget. And they did so with lightning speed.


Federal income taxes: “They don’t take them to be mean.”

In honor of young people thinking big thoughts, take a moment and check out NPP’s suite of Tax Day materials. Run a tax receipt so you can see how you personally contributed to programs ranging from WIC to nuclear weapons. Play with our all-new and wildly popular Trade-Offs tool so you can see how much taxpayers in your own city or town pay toward a variety of federal programs – and what else that money could buy. And, if you’ve spoken with your paycheck, take a few minutes to view our animated video If Paychecks Could Talk.


Sequestration: And so it Begins

Unable to broker an eleventh-hour deal with congressional Republican leaders, President Obama signed the order activating the automatic across-the-board federal spending cuts known as sequestration.


Sequestration's Havoc

Designed as a penalty for congressional inaction, sequestration was supposed to force legislators to work together within a deficit reduction paradigm. It failed as a disciplinary measure. Many will implicate the prevailing austerity rhetoric as part of the problem believing it unwise to cut federal investment in the midst of continued economic crisis – especially when sequestration takes meaningful tax reform off the table. Now, just days away, sequestration is on course to fail us all – especially the most vulnerable and marginalized Americans.


The SOTU Demands a Better Budget

Our nation is operating on a temporary budget and a temporary debt-ceiling suspension with indiscriminate budget cuts threatening critical investments ranging from education to food safety. The State of the Union address failed to acknowledge how far we are from resolving our fiscal challenges in a manner worthy of the dreams and aspirations held by the people of our nation.


Best of 2012: From tax cuts to the fiscal cliff

What a year for the federal budget! In 2012, our nation tackled complicated topics ranging from tax cuts to sequestration. The November election pivoted on candidates’ federal spending and revenue plans, and highly polarized debates about the so-called “fiscal cliff” continue to rage in Washington. What's Ahead for the Fiscal ...

Ryan Pick Solidifies Competing Visions in Federal Budget Debate

If there was ever any doubt that the U.S. federal budget would claim center-stage in the 2012 presidential race, it vanished with Mitt Romney's selection of House Budget Chair Paul Ryan (R-WI) as the GOP Vice Presidential nominee. Although Mitt Romney has emphasized he will run on a Romney budget, ...


Introducing Backyard Budget

The Challenge NPP is participating in the Knight News Challenge, seeking funding for the mobile piece of our new Backyard Budget project. Please help us strengthen our proposal by reading it and telling us what you think; you can do this on the News Challenge website. What is Backyard Budget ...


What Happens When a Paycheck Talks?

It’s late Friday afternoon. A young worker sitting at his desk receives his first paycheck. “Oh. Wow,” he exclaims, “My first paycheck!” His eyes move quickly to his take-home pay. “Man, I hate taxes,” he grumbles. But his feisty paycheck talks back, offering to tell him the story of the ...