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The Obama administration's 2013 budget "blueprint" has revived debate over the sustainability of U.S. spending and the risks associated with a rising national debt. Long-term budget projections, particularly with ballooning entitlement spending, indicate the country faces insolvency over the next few decades unless appropriate fiscal reforms are put in place. Dozens of deficit reduction plans have been put forth by an array of private and public policy groups, but Washington has been unable to come together on this essential issue.
This Backgrounder outlines the competing policy paths on fiscal reforms and the global consequences for failing to bring down U.S. debt.