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house Bill H.R. 1871

Removing Inflation Adjustments from the Federal Budget

Argument in favor

Allows Congress to look more critically at requests for increased funding by removing assumption that spending will increase in relation to inflation.

Argument opposed

Essentially ignores the fact that inflation exists. Erodes purchasing power of discretionary spending programs.

bill Progress

  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on the Budget
  • The house Passed April 8th, 2014
    Roll Call Vote 230 Yea / 185 Nay
      house Committees
      Committee on the Budget
    IntroducedMay 8th, 2013

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What is House Bill H.R. 1871?

Removes inflation adjustment for discretionary spending. Current law requires the Congressional Budgeting Office (CBO) to assume that spending will rise with inflation.


Impacts how rosy the budget can look, depending on if you adjust for inflation or not.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 1871

The CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 1871 would not have a significant impact on the federal budget.

More Information

Media: Blog: Baseline Reform Act and Pro-Growth Budgeting Act (HR 1874)

Of Note:

-For fiscal year 2011, 38% of all spending was discretionary spending, and covered areas including but not limited to defense, education, law enforcement, housing, veterans’ health, job training, transportation, health research and disease control, national parks and forests, and foreign assistance. 

-Data on discretionary expenditures goes back to 1962. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, there has not a single ten-year period since 1962 in which total discretionary funding was frozen. 

- ln Spring of 2011, according to the CBPP, the "CBO compared a ten-year freeze in discretionary appropriations — both defense and non-defense — with its ten-year baseline, in which appropriations grow with inflation.  Relative to the baseline, a freeze would reduce expenditures for these programs by $1.3 trillion over the next ten years.  Counting the resulting interest savings, the deficit would appear $1.6 trillion lower than if discretionary programs simply grew with inflation.  This extra room could suggest that the nation could afford $1.3 trillion in new tax cuts or expansions in mandatory programs."


Baseline Reform Act of 2014

Official Title

To amend the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985 to reform the budget baseline.