The 15 heartless proposals in Trump's budget
- Author: Leroy Wright May 25, 2017,
May 25, 2017, 0:12
While Donald Trump was dancing and swinging swords with his fellow billionaires in Saudi Arabia, his budget director and minions were back in Washington singing far more risky swords, slashing the social safety net of millions of poor, elderly, disabled, hungry and disadvantaged Americans.
So, yes, Medicaid spending would increase by $4.7 trillion over a decade.
Congressional Republicans generally favor cutting domestic spending to help pay for increases in defense and tax cuts.
The budget also calls for tax cuts and a balanced budget, according to projections from Trump's team.
Trump's balanced-budget goal depends not only on the growth projections that most economists view as overly optimistic but also a variety of accounting gimmicks, including an nearly $600 billion peace dividend from winding down overseas military operations and "double counting" $2.1 trillion in revenues from economic growth - using them to both pay for tax cuts and bring down the deficit.
Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney on Wednesday defended President Trump's budget proposal to a House panel, arguing its steep cuts were necessary to reduce the country's deficits.
The budget is not likely to become law in its current form.
Tucked under the Infrastructure Plan, the budget said the $1 trillion will be met by a combination of "new Federal funding incentivized through non-Federal funding, and expedited projects (like Keystone XL pipeline)", with $200 billion allocated in outlays related to infrastructure initiatives.
The plan must be approved by Congress, which is unlikely to approve numerous cuts.
Here's a rundown of some of the bigger line items in the budget.
Many rank-and-file Republicans recoiled from the cuts, however, which would squeeze foreign aid and domestic programs funded annually by Congress by about 10 percent next year and $1.4 trillion over the coming decade. Kentucky, a conservative state that signed on to the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion, would also be hit hard, with assistance dropping by 9.7 percent. The proposal would change that, either by giving states a limit on Medicaid spending per enrollee or giving states a fixed amount of money via a block grant to administer their own Medicaid programs.
Discretionary Pentagon funding would increase $469 billion over the decade by eliminating a defense spending sequester. It would allocate $1.6 billion for the creation of a wall along the USA border with Mexico.
It was meant to fund events that could not be forecast and thus could not be budgeted for (hence the name), and thus is not subject to Budget Control Act caps. Even Mulvaney said he was "honestly surprised" he could balance the budget. How?
"When you say cut are you speaking Washington or regular language?" The proposal would extend the work requirement to all able-bodied adults. "They rot from within", he said to the House Budget Committee. And that program could end up requiring states to raise their unemployment taxes.
States now administer SNAP with federal money, but would have to come up with an average of 10 percent of the cost by 2020 and 25 percent by 2023. Another 22% of recipients are working full-time and then the remainder of clients who receive benefits from the SNAP program are either working part-time, they're in a training program or for some other reason, they're unemployed. The budget also does not include the tax-reform plan the administration has touted, which most estimates figure would add more than $5 trillion to the budget. "If you are on food stamps and you are able-bodied, we need you to go to work". Democrats say they're anxious that corporate and individual income tax cuts will increase the national debt.
Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) called Trump's budget "a collection of broken promises to the American people" that "would leave Americans poorer, sicker, less educated, and less able to achieve a decent standard of living". Both credits are created to incentivize low-income people, especially those with children, to work.
Single Family Housing Direct Loans program: The $61 million Department of Agriculture program guarantees loans for rural buyers.