CBO: Debt Still on Unsustainable Path

Jan 28, 2019 | Budgets & Projections

For Immediate Release 

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released its Budget and Economic Outlook for the next decade this morning, which warned that our debt is headed to uncharted waters.

Under current law, CBO projects debt will rise from 78 percent of the economy today to almost 93 percent by 2029 and over 152 percent within 30 years. Under CBO’s Alternative Fiscal Scenario, which assumes the continuation of current policies, debt would reach 105 percent of the economy by 2029 and exceed record levels set after World War II by 2030.

The following is a statement from Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget:

You need to go no further than this report to see the real state of the union – our national debt is rising rapidly, and trillion-dollar deficits are just on the horizon. Numbers don’t lie, and anyone with a calculator on their phone can see that debt is a problem that can’t be ignored. 

The debt doesn’t just burden future generations, it also stands in the way of economic and political progress today. With the government now reopened, it is time for the new Congress and the President to work to put the country on more solid fiscal ground.

CBO’s annual report is a reminder that the situation is getting worse, not better. Lawmakers need to stop the digging, but even that will keep debt growing. They should come up with a plan now while the economy is strong to put our debt on a downward path and phase it in to avoid the much more disruptive choices that procrastination will bring.

For more quick analysis, see CBO Budget Projections Show Bleak Outlook.

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For more information contact Patrick Newton, press secretary, at newton@crfb.org