Congressional Budget Office’s Other Number Problem

Posted February 2, 2015 at 12:19pm

Some political observers maintain that adopting the Republican-endorsed practice known as “dynamic scoring ” would gravely undermine the Congressional Budget Office’s credibility moving forward.  

Actuarial tug-of-war aside, the agency shouldn’t be surprised if folks on Capitol Hill stop taking its calls altogether — particularly since the telecommunications gods appear to already be throwing shade.  

(Courtesy HOH tipster)


An HOH tipster could not believe the caller ID read-out when the CBO reached out to touch someone in the office. “BAD-Projections to Hon. XXX,” the digital display clearly reads.  

While we’d love to report on how this is all the work of some rogue information technology employee or a seriously nerdy hacker, the sad, terribly boring state of affairs is this is really a compression issue.  

You see, when someone from the CBO’s dedicated Budget Analysis Division rings up lawmakers, there are only so many characters that can fit on the phone screen. Same goes for the Financial Analysis Division (FAD, for short) and Macroeconomic Analysis Division (MAD Projections would make for fun business cards).  

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