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  • Issue Brief posted February 28, 2014 by Rea S. Hederman, Jr., Rachel Greszler, John L. Ligon Chairman Camp’s Tax Reform Plan a Milestone for Dynamic Analysis

    House Ways and Means Committee chairman Dave Camp (R–MI) released a plan for comprehensive tax reform. Setting aside its merits, Camp’s proposal is noteworthy on two accounts: (1) It presents the most comprehensive tax reform proposal in decades, and (2) it includes a dynamic estimate from the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT). The latter is a long overdue and welcome…

  • Backgrounder posted February 3, 2014 by Robert E. Moffit, Ph.D., Rea S. Hederman, Jr. CBO Confirms: Medicare Premium Support Means Savings for Taxpayers and Seniors

    A major report by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) confirms that Medicare premium support (a defined-contribution system of health-plan financing) would make the financially troubled federal program more fiscally sustainable.[1] The CBO finds that, in a new competitive system of health plans, private plans can offer the same benefit and services as traditional…

  • Commentary posted December 11, 2013 by Rea S. Hederman, Jr. Paying Tomorrow for Hamburgers Today

    The new budget deal is disappointing to conservatives and believers in a limited government that manages its finances. Earlier during the negotiations, my colleagues and I at the Heritage Foundation warned that sacrificing short-term budget constraint for savings that would occur in the long-term future is a dubious proposition. Budget historians know that previous…

  • Issue Brief posted December 5, 2013 by Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D., Rea S. Hederman, Jr., Bryan Riley, Luke Coffey Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP): Pitfalls and Promises

    The United States and the European Union (EU) have begun the negotiation of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), which could greatly reduce or eliminate both tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade between the U.S. and the EU, a trade relationship that accounts for about 30 percent of world trade. The promotion of economic freedom is a vital part of…

  • Issue Brief posted November 12, 2013 by Derrick Morgan, Rea S. Hederman, Jr., Nina Owcharenko, Romina Boccia Principles for the Budget Conference

    For the first time in years, lawmakers have agreed to convene in a budget conference to reconcile differences between their respective budget proposals, as presented by House Budget Committee chair Paul Ryan (R–WI) and Senate Budget Committee chair Patty Murray (D–WA). The two chambers’ budgets differ wildly in terms of taxes and the size of government. A budget…

  • Issue Brief posted April 11, 2013 by Robert E. Moffit, Ph.D., Rea S. Hederman, Jr. Medicare Savings: 5 Steps to a Down Payment on Structural Reform

    If we solve our healthcare spending (Medicare), practically all of our fiscal problems go away. If we don’t? Then almost anything else we do will not solve our fiscal problems. - Dr. Victor Fuchs, Emeritus Professor of Economics, Stanford University, March 5, 2012. [1] The Medicare savings embodied in President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2014 budget proposal—mostly from…

  • Issue Brief posted March 19, 2013 by Rea S. Hederman, Jr., John L. Ligon Senate Budget Tax Plan: Murray’s Tax Increases Trade Economic Growth for Revenue

    Senate Budget Committee chairwoman Patty Murray (D–WA) unveiled the first Senate budget in four years. Murray deserves some credit for actually advancing a budget, but her budget contains steep tax increases that would reduce economic growth by increasing the cost of capital investment. Murray’s tax plan singles out corporations and individuals that are already faced…

  • Commentary posted March 19, 2013 by Rea S. Hederman, Jr. Three Steps to Spark Hiring in the US

    While the economy continues its slow recovery, employment lags. Yes, the unemployment rate has slightly fallen. But that derives from a mass exodus of potential workers from the labor market, and the failure of those who left the labor force during the recession to return to the job market. The labor force participation rate remains at its cyclical low. There has been…

  • Issue Brief posted January 4, 2013 by Rea S. Hederman, Jr., James Sherk Heritage Employment Report: In December Out with the Old, In with the Same Thing

    The December employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows that 2012 ended with an unemployment rate of 7.8 percent and 155,000 new jobs. The labor market has not had an adequate recovery and has made little progress from 2011 to 2012. Many American workers will experience permanent lower lifetime earnings as a result of the poor economic recovery,…

  • Issue Brief posted December 7, 2012 by Rea S. Hederman, Jr., James Sherk Heritage Employment Report: Job Market Struggles in November

    The economy created 146,000 jobs in November, and the unemployment rate fell to 7.7 percent from 7.9 percent in October. The numbers in the November report were not substantially affected by Hurricane Sandy, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). While the headline numbers are positive, there are some major concerns inside the report. For instance, labor…

  • Issue Brief posted November 2, 2012 by Rea S. Hederman, Jr., James Sherk Heritage Employment Report: October Report Sees Unemployment Rate Rise

    In October, the labor market continued its slow recovery by adding 171,000 jobs, but the unemployment rate climbed to 7.9 percent according to the latest jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Job growth continues to be sluggish, given the length of time out of the recession. At the current rate of job growth, a return to full employment is not expected…

  • Issue Brief posted November 1, 2012 by Robert E. Moffit, Ph.D., Rea S. Hederman, Jr., Alyene Senger Obama’s Medicare Plan: Seniors Will Pay More

    Today’s seniors are facing higher Medicare costs. Over the next five years, current law, as amended by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA, also known as “Obamacare”), and President Obama’s budget proposals guarantee higher costs for today’s seniors. Status Quo Hikes The 2012 Medicare trustees report says that, over the period 2012 to…

  • Issue Brief posted September 28, 2012 by Rea S. Hederman, Jr. Why Medicare Premium Support Would Not Cost Future Beneficiaries $6,400 More

    Opponents of Medicare premium support routinely charge that it would cost future retirees $6,400 more annually. In fact, this dollar amount is incorrect, and the charge is erroneous. Such false charges are based on an outdated Congressional Budget Office (CBO) model of House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan’s (R–WI) 2011 budget proposal. Ryan’s 2012 proposal,…

  • Special Report posted September 13, 2012 by David Azerrad, Rea S. Hederman, Jr. Defending the Dream: Why Income Inequality Doesn’t Threaten Opportunity

    Introduction Part I: The Promise of America Part II: The Misguided Focus on Income Inequality Part III: The Real Threats to The American Dream Conclusion Executive Summary Today, on the Left and on the Right, everyone talks about rebuilding, saving, restoring, defending, or rescuing an American Dream that is slipping,…

  • Issue Brief posted September 7, 2012 by Rea S. Hederman, Jr., James Sherk Heritage Employment Report: Dog Days of August Howl in the Labor Market

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the economy created on net 96,000 new jobs in August and that the unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent. The decline in the unemployment rate was entirely due to a steep decline in the percentage of people in the labor force, which reached a 30-year low. Forward-looking indicators tell a grim story as the labor market…