Corporate Taxes Are Down and the Deficit Is Up

The federal deficit is going up, up, up:

The federal budget deficit ballooned rapidly in the first four months of the fiscal year amid falling tax revenue and higher spending, the Treasury Department said Tuesday….The deficit grew 77 percent in the first four months of fiscal year 2019 compared with the same period one year before.

….Lawmakers enacted sweeping tax cuts at the end of 2017, and those changes continue to reduce revenue flowing to the Treasury Department. Tax revenue for October 2018 through January 2019 fell $19 billion, or 2 percent, Treasury said, though there were major reductions in the amount of money collected from businesses. Treasury found corporate tax payments over the first four months of the fiscal year dropped from from $75.5 billion to $58.9 billion, a fall of roughly 22 percent.

Ah, yes, “major reductions” in revenue from corporate taxes. Let’s take a look at that:

Sadly, it looks like those tax cuts didn’t pay for themselves. Yet again. Maybe next time.

In addition to falling revenue, the deficit has increased because of higher military spending and higher Medicare spending. The Medicare thing is sort of unexpected. Maybe I’ll take a closer look at that later today.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

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We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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