CBO Estimates Debt Ceiling Deal Will Cut Debt By $1.5 Trillion
May 30, 2023 9:06 pm
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The debt-ceiling deal negotiated by President Biden and Speaker Kevin McCarthy will reduce the U.S. government’s debt by $1.5 trillion over the next decade, the Congressional Budget Office estimated Tuesday.
In a letter to Rep. McCarthy (R-CA), CBO director Phillip Schwagel said the agency projected the deal’s caps on discretionary spending in 2024 and 2025 would reduce outlays by $1.3 trillion over the next 1o years. Mandatory spending would fall by $10 billion. Revenues are projected to fall by $2 billion due to cuts to funding for enforcement by the Internal Revenue Service. Interest on the public debt would decline by $188 billion.
Although the deal also requires student loan payments and interest accrual to restart this summer, the CBO does not count that as having a budgetary effect because it already assumed the suspension would end this August.
The CBO projects that cuts to the IRS budget would decrease spending by $1.4 trillion while decreasing revenue by $2.3 trillion over the decade. The result is a net increase in the deficit of $900 billion during the 2023 through 2033 period.
The changes to work requirements for food stamps, officially known as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), actually increase the cost of the program by $2.1 billion over the coming decade. While the changes would tighten work requirements on able-bodied adults without dependents, it loosens requirements for veterans, homeless Americans, and Americans moving out of foster care. The net result is more individuals qualifying for SNAP benefits and a higher price tag, the CBO said.
CBO estimated that clawing back unused pandemic aid funds would permanently rescind $27.1 billion in budget authority. But this only reduces outlays by $11.0 billion over the 2023–2033 period because some of those funds would have been spent later.
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