Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

MY VIEW: Maya MacGuineas

Aug 8, 2011

In two recent commentaries, written for CNN and CNN Money, CRFB president Maya MacGuineas talks about S&P's recent downgrade of the U.S. credit rating and what it means for Washington going forward. (Click here for CRFB's reaction to the downgrade.)

In her commentary for CNN Money, MacGuineas lays out specifically what Washington must do to get our AAA credit rating back: pick a fiscal goal, put a multi-year plan in place, address the toughest areas of the budget, and enact real spending caps and triggers. She concludes:

If we do all of this, we'll win back the heart of Mr. AAA by the end of the year. I would bet my dwindling retirement account on it. If we don't, we will all pay a very steep price. And assuming we do get him back, we should never let him get away again.

Click here to read the full CNN Money commentary.

In her CNN commentary, MacGuineas writes that this unfortunate turn of events should urge Washington to refocus its efforts on "going big" and enacting a comprehensive fiscal reform package that would prevent future downgrades. She writes about the areas of the budget that must be reformed to meaningfully improve our fiscal outlook, like defense, Social Security, health care, and the tax code, and says:

Big deals are hard, but small deals are hard too. Might as well try to do something to solve as many problems as possible and hopefully bring more people to the table in support of going big. It would stave off the next downgrade.

Click here to read the full CNN commentary.

"My Views" are works published by members of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, but they do not necessarily reflect the views of all members of the committee.