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Economic Policy
Guide: The Federal Budget

This list offers an in-depth look at the federal budget and its central role in economic policymaking. Use the Export to My Lists button above to turn this into a research list for your students.

Theme Key Understandings

  • Governments' approaches to regulation change over time based on domestic and global circumstances
  • American domestic policies span a spectrum from a free-market approach to a highly regulatory approach
  • A citizen's opinion on the need for regulation generally depends on his or her role in society
  • Social and economic policies form the basis of domestic policy
  • Through social policy, government officials can provide programs and services to maintain and improve citizen welfare
  • Through economic policy, the government seeks to maintain stability for the national economy
  • Foreign policies are influenced by the accepted doctrine of a time period, which is often shaped in reaction to world events
  • The executive branch plays the leading role in directing foreign policy

Key Questions

  • In what ways is the federal budget central to American economic policy?
  • What is the difference between mandatory and discretionary spending? How does discretionary spending offer insight into our policy priorities?


  1. Overview: The Federal Budget
  2. Timelines: Tax Reform: Timeline
  3. Outlines: Outline
  4. Transcripts: Transcript
  5. Lesson: Introduction
  6. Lesson: 1-How the Budget is Created
  7. Lesson: 2-Politics of the Budget
  8. Lesson: 3-Congressional-Executive Relations in Budgeting
  9. Lesson: Closing
  10. Investigate Activities: The National Debt
  11. Glossary Terms: discretionary spending
  12. Glossary Terms: mandatory spending
  13. Photos & Illustrations: National debt clock
  14. Facts & Figures: Federal Government Income, 2008–2018
  15. Reference Articles: Federal Budget Process
  16. Reference Articles: Tax Revolt
  17. Reference Articles: Federal Budget Deficit
  18. Reference Articles: National Debt

MLA Citation

"The Federal Budget." History Hub, ABC-CLIO, 2019, historyhub.abc-clio.com/Support/Content/2156127?cid=256. Accessed 6 Dec. 2019.

Entry ID: 2156127

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