Hillary Clinton comes up $2.2 trillion short in paying for her policy agenda, despite hiking taxes by $1.3 trillion, according to a new analysis of the Democratic nominee’s campaign platform.
The American Action Forum, a center-right policy institute, released a report Thursday finding Clinton’s domestic agenda would "have a dramatic effect on the federal budget."
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Gordon Gray, American Action Forum’s director of fiscal policy, based the report on estimates of policy proposals from the Clinton campaign itself, as well as independent analyses from the Tax Policy Center and the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.
Gray found Clinton’s policies for expanding government’s role in family leave and student loans would contribute significantly to the deficit, and in turn a growing national debt that stands at $19.358 trillion.
In fact, the amount of debt held by the public alone would reach $25.825 trillion in 2026 under Clinton’s plan. The amount of debt held by the public today is $13.968 trillion.
"Based on these estimates, Secretary Clinton’s proposals would, on net and over a ten-year period (2017-2026), increase revenues by $1.3 trillion, increase outlays by $3.5 trillion, for a combined deficit effect of nearly $2.2 trillion over the next decade," Gray wrote.
The report notes that Clinton’s proposals would also increase deficits to 5.7 percent of Gross Domestic Product, and the debt held by the public to 93.4 percent of GDP, "well above the current law projection of 85.6 percent."
Clinton’s most expensive policy proposal by far is guaranteeing up to 12 weeks of paid family leave at a cost of $1.598 trillion. Her "College Compact" plan that would give free community college tuition for students who work 10 hours a week would cost $347 billion. The campaign says the plan would be fully paid for by hiking taxes on the wealthy.
Clinton’s child care plan would cost $337 billion, while debt free college for future students would cost $107 billion. The tab for universal preschool reaches $66 billion.
The American Action Forum points out that a Clinton administration would likely cost taxpayers more, as the campaign has yet to release financing details for additional proposals.
"This estimate does not include proposals where it does not appear evident that the campaign intended to budget for them, for example, Secretary Clinton expressed support for fully funding the IDEA program (possibly adding $180 billion over the next ten years) and increasing health funding for Puerto Rico (possible cost of $15-20 billion over the next ten years) but did not appear to propose them as discrete spending proposals," the report said.