Few topics are as central in voters’ minds as they approach major elections as economic policy and the role of government. One reflection of that is the increasing concerns about the size of the federal debt held by the public. Yet there is less consensus on ways to manage government spending, tax policies, and commitments to fund entitlement programs like Medicare and Social Security that together impact the economy and people’s well-being. Indeed, throughout the 2024 election, voters will hear differing approaches to rising government debt, Social Security, the scheduled expiration of the 2017 tax cuts, and even the proper role and size of government. The ways the next Congress and administration grapple with these economic and fiscal challenges will not only impact the long-term trajectory of the economy but may also redefine the role and functions of government.

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