The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

Alice Rivlin: Will Our Polarized Politics Push Us over the Fiscal Cliff? - Thursday, October 18th at 4:30 PM

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Please join us for Alice Rivlin’s talk, “Will Our Polarized Politics Push Us over the Fiscal Cliff?” at Rockefeller 003 at 4:30 pm, October 18, 2012.

The United States has amassed a national deficit of over $16 trillion, and yet our polarized partisan politics have prevented leaders from effectively addressing this economic crisis. Republicans insist we deal with the debt by lowering spending, while Democrats reply that higher tax revenue is the only way to balance the budget and address the deficit. To save America’s financial future, however, a bipartisan compromise is necessary to produce a “grand bargain” including both tax and entitlement reform.

Professor Alice Rivlin was instrumental in drafting one such bipartisan economic plan as a leading member of the Domenci-Rivlin Debt Reduction Task Force; they crafted a plan to incorporate both entitlement and tax reform in stabilizing the debt currently threatening America’s future prosperity. They call for politicians to compromise their ideologies to avoid the risks of the “fiscal cliff.”

Alice M. Rivlin is a Senior Fellow in Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution and a Visiting Professor at the Public Policy Institute of Georgetown University. In 2010 President Obama appointed Rivlin to the Simpson-Bowles Commission on the federal budget. She also co-chaired, with former Senator Pete Domenici, the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Debt Reduction Task Force. An expert on fiscal and monetary policy, social policy, and urban issues, Rivlin served as the vice chair of the Federal Reserve Board from 1996 to 1999. She was director of the White House Office of Management and Budget from 1994 to 1996, helping to transform a large budget deficit into substantial surpluses by the end of the decade. She founded the Congressional Budget Office in 1975 and served as its director until 1983. Rivlin is the author of numerous books and articles, among them Systematic Thinking for Social Action and Restoring the American Dream. In 2008, Rivlin received the inaugural Daniel Patrick Moynihan Prize from the American Academy of Political and Social Science. Rivlin has received a MacArthur Foundation Prize Fellowship, and has taught at Harvard, George Mason, and New School Universities.

The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences