The $90 trillion green new deal

  • 26 February 2019
  • NormanL

The American Action Forum has released a study of the Democrat's proposed "Green New Deal," a grab bag of proposals that includes everything from universal health care to guaranteed jobs and the end of fossil fuels. How much would all of this stuff cost?

According to AAF, upwards of $90 trillion by 2029. And that's just for six parts of the GND. Let's take a look at just one of them:

The Green New Deal's jobs guarantee would also cost a considerable amount. The AAF based its estimates here on a 2018 report from the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, which found that reaching full employment would involve putting roughly 10.7 million unemployed or underemployed people to work. Assuming the average annual cost per job (including an average wage of $32,500) would be $56,000, this would cost a total of $543 billion.

The AFF updated some of those numbers with 2019 data, and found that a federal jobs guarantee would cost $547 billion in 2019, and $6.762 trillion from 2020 to 2019. Both of those numbers would rise if, with a guaranteed job waiting for them, many of those who aren't currently looking for work decide to join the labor force.

Of course, there are also plenty of workers who earn less than $32,500 per year (or $625 each week) who would naturally want to switch jobs in order to make more. Including them "would increase the cost to $3.8 trillion in 2019, $44.6 trillion between 2020 and 2029," the AAF says.

The idea might sound good to Democratic candidates running for (and pandering to) progressive voters. But paying for it -- even a portion of it -- would be impossible without confiscatory taxation (and printing money to cover the rest).