Commentary: Federal Deficit is the Problem Lawmakers Ignore, Burdening Future Generations

Published Jul 5, 2022. By Robert Bixby.

With the recent onslaught of crisis-driven news—everything from 40-year high inflation, war in Ukraine, Supreme Court rulings, and mass killings—it is easy to forget some festering problems that lawmakers have ignored for years. These problems have not gone away or even become less important. They have just become less visible. Two official reports published within the past weeks should serve as a wake-up call: the new federal budget baseline from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the Social Security and Medicare Trustees reports.

Ignoring our long-term structural fiscal and economic problems will not make them go away. The longer we wait to act, the more difficult the solutions will be -- and the greater the risks will be to the nation’s future.