The U.S. deficit grew by $222 billion from this time last year -- reaching a total of $895 billion, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. According to the CBO: Corporate income tax receipts fell by $71 billion (or 30 percent), reflecting payments for the 2017 and 2018 tax years. About one-third of the decline occurred in June. Collections in June were mostly estimated payments for tax year 2018, when several provisions of P.L. 115-97 took effect, including the new lower corporate tax rate and the expanded ability to immediately deduct the full value of equipment purchases.
President Trump on Thursday announced that he would cancel a scheduled 2.1 percent across-the-board pay increase for federal workers, as well as locality pay increases. "In light of our Nation's fiscal situation, Federal employee pay must be performance-based, and aligned strategically toward recruiting, retaining, and rewarding high-performing Federal employees and those with critical skill sets," Trump wrote in a letter to the Speaker of the House and the President of the Senate. read more
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) wants large employers such as Amazon, Walmart and McDonald's to fully cover the cost of food stamps, public housing, Medicaid and other federal assistance received by their employees. The goal, he said, is to force corporations to pay a living wage and curb roughly $150 billion in taxpayer dollars that go to funding federal assistance programs for low-wage workers each year. read more
Asbestos is now legally allowed back into U.S. manufacturing under a serious of loopholes by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). On June 1, the EPA authorized a "SNUR" (Significant New Use Rule) that allowed the creation of new products containing asbestos on a case-by-case basis. read more
Satellite images from last week show that North Korea is making numerous improvements to the infrastructure at a nuclear research facility, despite Donald Trump's declaration that "There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea." read more