On Thursday morning President Trump released a $1.15 trillion budget proposal that seeks out a major increase in military and other security spending while cutting down spending for a wide range of other agencies including the EPA and State Department.
Trump said, “We are going to do more with less, and make the Government lean and accountable to the people.”
He called for $54 billion in “reductions to non-Defense programs” to offset the additional defense spending.
Trump said this would include “deep cuts to foreign aid.”
Trump added, “It is time to prioritize the security and well-being of Americans, and to ask the rest of the world to step up and pay its fair share.”
The largest since Ronald Reagan, the $54 billion, 10 percent boost for the military promises immediate money for troop readiness, the fight against Islamic State militants and procurement of new ships, fighter jets and other weapons.
The border wall is a factor, as well, with a hefty down payment on Trump’s sought-after southern border wall, seeking an immediate $1.4 billion infusion in the ongoing fiscal year, with another $2.6 billion planned for the 2018 budget year starting Oct. 1.
Law enforcement agencies like the FBI would be spared in the budget plan. Twelve of the government’s fifteen Cabinet agencies would absorb cuts under the president’s proposal. The main losers are Agriculture, Labor, State, and the Cabinet-level EPA.
Trump seeks a 28 percent reduction at the State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development. This will bring big impact on foreign aid, but the plan says this would “free up funding for critical priorities here at home and put America first.”
Saving much money, the budget goes after frequent targets of the party’s staunchest conservatives, eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts, legal aid and heating assistance for low-income Americans, and the AmeriCorps national service program established by former President Bill Clinton.
House budget director Mick Mulvaney said, “This is a hard power budget, not a soft power budget.”
Lawmakers will have the final say on Trump’s proposal in process, and many of the cuts will be deemed dead on arrival. Mulvaney acknowledged to reporters that passing the cuts could be an uphill struggle. He stated the administration would negotiate over replacement cuts.
The foreseen battle was joined almost immediately on Capitol Hill.
“Devastating to the middle class,” is what Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., called the proposed cuts.
Then again, Schumer thinks that Obamcare doesn’t have to be repealed. In his and other Democrats’ minds it just needs minor adjustments which they will not offer for discussion as long as Obamacare is being repealed.
It’s time for the GOP to stand together and get things done. We need drastic change in Washington and now is the time to do it.
We cannot make assumptions for 2018 and must seize the opportunity we have at this time.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 16, 2017
Mick Mulvaney breaks down Trump’s ‘America First’ Budget: