New York University Public Law and Legal Theory Working Papers

Document Type



Tax Notes, Vol. 137, No. 1, 2012


Many decry the fact that policymakers are nowhere close to addressing the long-term fiscal shortfall and as evidence they point to the Congressional Budget Office’s projection of enormous long-term deficits under current policy. This report contends that the minimum deficit reduction incorporated in leading progressive and conservative budgets can put us on a path toward closing the long-term deficit. A significant gap would remain even if consensus were fully realized. However, this report describes a plausible path for further cutting the long-term deficit, as well as important revenue and spending backstops. Finally, it explains that while the country can and should try to reach a fiscally sustainable path, because of the uncertainty surrounding many of those reforms — especially the restructuring of the healthcare system — we cannot expect an immediate solution.

Date of Authorship for this Version



federal deficit, budget, tax, spending