Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

APRIL 25, 2006
12:18 PM

CONTACT: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
Shannon Spillane, 202-408-1080 or

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities Briefing: Joint Tax Committee Estimate Unmasks Gimmick Planned for Use in Tax-Cut Bill


WHAT: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities Conference Call: JOINT TAX COMMITTEE ESTIMATE UNMASKS GIMMICK PLANNED FOR USE IN TAX-CUT BILL: Approach Would Add New Tax Cuts to "Pay For" Other Tax Cuts

WHEN: Wednesday, April 26 at 12 p.m. (ET)



-- Robert Greenstein, executive director, CBPP

-- Joel Friedman, senior fellow, CBPP

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities will hold a conference call briefing on Wednesday, April 26 at 12 p.m. (ET) to discuss two significant budget gimmicks that the Congressional Leadership plans to place in the forthcoming conference report on the tax reconciliation bill. Senate rules bar reconciliation bills that increase long-term deficits. The gimmicks, which rest on timing shifts, would make it appear as though the bill would not enlarge long-term deficits when that is precisely what the bill would do.

Further, the gimmicks themselves are tax cuts which raise revenue in the short run but lose larger amounts of revenue in the long run. Thus, the conference reports would be adding tax cuts to pay for other tax cuts.

The conference call briefing will include examination of a Joint Tax Committee estimate that has just come to light, and that shows the gimmicks to be cynical attempts to mask the legislation's long-term impacts.

The briefers also will explain that use of the gimmicks poses a basic test of integrity for Senate Budget Committee chairman Judd Gregg, who will rule on whether the bill should be acknowledged to increase long-term deficits or whether to maintain there is no such effect despite the fact that all analysts know otherwise. Senator Gregg has been outspoken of late about Congress' willingness to manipulate budget rules to increase spending and enlarge deficits. Will he take a consistent stand with respect to efforts to manipulate budget rules to pass deficit-financed tax cuts, or will he now bend the rules himself?

After opening remarks, the panelists will take questions.

To participate, register by e-mailing, or calling the media team at 202-408-1080. Register on-line at