NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Federal Budget Not Being Cut

October 17, 1995

Despite the impression left by much of the talk in Washington, the Republican budget does not cut federal spending or tax revenues. Both actually increase significantly. The reason for the confusion is that in Washington lingo, anytime projected increases are reduced, that is considered a "cut."

A true picture can be gained by comparing what the government actually spent and raised during the past seven years with what it intends to spend and raise during the next seven years:

  • From 1989 to 1995, federal spending totaled $9.5 trillion.
  • During the next seven years, the Congressional budget agreement calls for spending of $12.1 trillion.
  • In the seven years just passed, the government collected $7.9 trillion in taxes.
  • Projected tax revenues over the next seven years are $11.2 trillion, even with proposed tax cuts taken into account.

The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that spending would rise by 37% and revenues by 44% if no changes were made in the budget. But with the GOP's seven-year plan, spending will increase by 27% and tax revenues by 41%.

Source: James K. Glassman, "The NO-Cut Budget," Washington Post, October 17, 1995.


Browse more articles on Tax and Spending Issues