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Federal Budget Deficit Projection Rises by $400 Billion

Federal Budget Deficit Projection Rises by $400 Billion

Jun 18, 2024

Federal Budget Deficit Projection Rises by $400 Billion

In a recent report, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has revised its projection for this year’s federal budget deficit, increasing the estimate by $400 billion, which marks a 27% surge from the original estimate provided in February.

The primary factors contributing to this revision include the supplemental spending package enacted in April, which delivers military support to Ukraine and Israel; the steeper-than-anticipated costs associated with reducing student loan borrower balances; an uptick in Medicaid expenditure; and an increase in spending on FDIC insurance following banking crises in 2023 and 2024, as reported by the Wall Street Journal.

The Wall Street Journal

The CBO report further projects a significant rise in the nation's debt, expecting it to swell from 99% of the gross domestic product (GDP) at the end of 2024 to a record 122% of GDP by the end of 2034. The report adds, "Then it continues to rise," emphasizing the looming financial challenges.

The forecast poses a problem for lawmakers due to the financial strain of managing the national debt, escalated costs of Social Security and Medicare attributed to an aging population, and rising healthcare expenses. This development challenges President Joe Biden’s claims of deficit reduction, as borrowing increased in 2023 and is anticipated to rise this year.

White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre responded to the report by reasserting President Biden's commitment to deficit reduction, "the president is going to work to do everything he can when it comes to lowering the deficit."

White House Senior Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates criticized the tax cuts passed during the Trump administration for exacerbating the deficit, which he claims adversely affects the American populace by prompting higher deficits. On the contrary, former President Donald Trump, campaigning for the presidency in 2024, has proposed further reductions in corporate tax rates.

Analyst David Ditch from the Heritage Foundation characterized the revised federal budget outlook as "gruesome," noting significant increases in both the deficit estimate for 2024 and the 10-year deficit projection. He emphasized that discretionary spending, particularly related to foreign conflicts, has nullified the expected benefits from last year's debt ceiling deal.

Wall Street Journal Article

CBO Report


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