If the sequester remains in effect, there will be little flexibility in the cuts to other mandatory spending
By Loren Adler, Shai Akabas and Brian Collins
Shari Lin contributed to this post.
Last week, we provided a broad overview of how sequestration would apply to the major categories of federal spending in fiscal year (FY) 2013: defense discretionary, non-defense discretionary, and non-defense (or “domestic”) mandatory.* Mandatory spending is composed of programs that are funded by formulas set in law and thus do not require an annual appropriations bill to continue. This type of spending can be loosely separated into two categories: Social Security and the health care entitlements (e.g., Medicare, Medicaid and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)); and everything else, sometimes known as “other mandatory spending.” The major entitlements are familiar topics, but even policy wonks may be at a loss when the topic of other mandatory spending arises.