If you were the least bit curious how Donald Trump plans to pay for those massive tax cuts for the rich, his cherished border wall, increased military spending, and a trillion-dollar infrastructure plan, an early draft of the Trump administration’s first budget has leaked out, and it calls for massive cuts in some of the country’s most popular programs.
The draft budget calls for drastic cuts at some agencies:
- 25 percent of the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget.
- A third of the State Department’s spending.
- Across-the-board cuts at most other agencies except the Defense Department.
As for what else will be cut, the draft shows reductions in food assistance to the poor, including food stamps, Pell grants for college students, and income assistance to senior citizens. Many of those programs are considered to be some of the most helpful in the federal budget and are proven to provide a direct and positive economic impact.
Kenneth Baer, a former associate director at the Office of Management and Budget under President Obama commented:
“They’re really going to be cutting into bone.”
Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, said it’s not unusual for a president’s initial budget be somewhat “skinny,” providing just a broad outline while actual specifics are worked out, but she added:
“This one appears as though it will be one of the skinniest budgets of recent memory. Possibly emaciated.”
How will such a budget be received on Capitol Hill? Republicans do control the House of Representatives and the Senate, but the initial Trump budget could still face significant resistance. Some moderate Republicans have already said they are not happy with the proposed spending cuts. Members of the House in particular have to keep in mind the fact they’ll be up for reelection in 2018. Will their constituents hold them responsible of they slash programs they benefit from?
The 2017 Trump budget may wind up being just the latest in a series of missteps by the White House.
This article was originally published by the same author at LiberalAmerica.org