National debt will now surpass $56 trillion by 2034, report says. What’s the problem?

The national debt continues to head in the wrong direction and at an accelerated pace. It will now surpass $56 trillion by 2034, according to a new report by the Congressional Budget Office.

At the moment the debt remains just under $35 trillion. Part of the problem is that the U.S. continues to spend more money than it collects in taxes.

“Continuing to spend massively more than we take in and adding every year massively to the national debt will not go on forever and unless we deal with it in a constructive way we will have a financial catastrophe at some point,” said Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, on the topic earlier this month.

For 2024, the CBO predicts the U.S. will spend $1.9 trillion more than it brings in. That’s up from the initially predicted $1.6 trillion deficit this year.

The increase was largely driven by President Biden canceling $100 billion in student loan debt, as well as the ballooning costs of aiding Ukraine and Israel and increased Medicaid spending.

“We have a political system where instead of doing any of the necessary things that hard budgets require, our politicians seem to bury their heads in the sand,” said Maya Macguineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Budget during an interview with The National Desk on the issue last month.

A partial or full extension of Donald Trump’s 2017 tax cuts – which Biden and Trump have said they support to varying degrees, will increase the deficits further.

“It’s not just spending. It is both spending and taxing you have to do both in order to reach balance,” Romney pointed out.

The leaders elected this fall will have to make a series of important decisions impacting the country’s financial situation including whether to raise the debt limit and by how much. They will also need to consider whether or not to extend Trump’s 2017 tax cuts and make decisions on healthcare subsidies.

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