Proposed Trump budget would eliminate 66 Federal programs

Trump's 2018 budget proposals would eliminate many federal programs that help the very American workers that Trump's campaign said he would support. Yet his budget proposals serve to cut savagely the safety net upon which many of his supporters depend.

Trump's proposals would completely eliminate 66 federal programs for a saving of $26.7 billion. Some of the programs would receive funding for 2018 but as part of a phasing out program. The cuts are in many different departments.
In Agriculture, for a saving of $855 million, four programs are cut including the Rural Business-Cooperative service, Rural Water and Waste Disposal Program Account, and Single Family Housing Direct loans. Obviously many rural Americans will have to pay more for house loans, and waste disposal with no help from the federal government.
In the Commerce Department Trump is cutting programs that help business for a savings of $633 million. This includes Economic Development Administration even though Trump crows about creating more jobs. Manufacturing Extension Partnership. Minority Business Development Agency. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Grants and Education. Trump does not want Americans to know about possible changes to Oceans and atmosphere due to climate change.
The Education Department faces huge cuts totalling $4.976 billion. This includes 21st Century Learning Centers, Comprehensive Literacy Development Grants. Literacy is not necessary in a Trump-run society. International Education. Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants. There is also less support for states as Supporting Effective Instruction State Grants are cut out. As are Teacher Quality Partnerships. Education quality in the US is likely to decline.
The Energy Department will see several programs cut for savings of $398 million. The Health and Human Services Department has a huge reduction in funding for saving of $4.834 billion. Cut is the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Community Services Block Grant, Health Professions and Nursing Training Programs. Low income Home Energy Assistance Program. Another program cut that will hurt the least well off.
In Housing and Urban Development savings are $4.123 billion. Again programs that can help those who at present cannot afford a home are cut. Self-Help and Assisted Homeownership Opportunity Program Account is gone along with several other programs such as Community Development Block.
The Abandoned Mine Land Grants are cut out so that states may be forced to pay for cleanup or engage in costly legal battles to make companies pay, when they still exist. The National Wildlife Fund is dumped as well. The Labor Department is cut by $527 million. The Migrant and Seasonal Farmworkers Training program is cut hurting both the workers and the farmers who depend upon them. The State Dept. and USAID are cut by a large $4.256 billion. The Development Assistance program is ended. The U.S. will lose out in the race between it and countries such as China which is eager to provide such assistance in areas such as Africa where they are competing for influence with the U.S. The Green Climate Fund and Global Climate Change initiative are to go but that is not surprising with the number of climate change skeptics in the Trump administration.
The Transportation Department will axe the National Infrastructure Investments program (TIGER). Yet Trump insists he wants to spend huge amounts on infrastructure. The saving is $499 million. The Treasury Department saves just $43 million by canceling the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program. Cuts in the Environmental Protection Agency total $493 million.
In other independent agencies cuts total $2.683 billion. Those cut include the Chemical Safety Board, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Institute for Museum and Library Services, African Development Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities. Given the need to fund the Pentagon the U.S. Institute for Peace is to go. While many of these programs could well need reforming, the Trump approach simply eliminates them altogether. In other moves he has made huge cuts for some programs.
An article in Politico sums up the situation: Rather than breaking with Washington precedent, Trump’s spending blueprint follows established conservative orthodoxy, cutting taxes on the wealthy, boosting defense spending and taking a hatchet to programs for the poor and disabled – potentially hurting many of the rural and low-income Americans who voted him into office.
In spite of a promise not to cut the Medicaid program his budget includes $600 billion in cuts over 10 years. The food stamp program would also be gone. Over ten years he also plans to cut $50 billion from agriculture subsidies a move that will hurt Trump in many rural areas. At the end of ten years the U.S. would spend nearly twice as much on defense as on all other domestic programs. Domestic discretionary spending would be capped at $429 billion per year, below their level in 2004 while the military cap would be $722 billion. Thankfully the proposals are only a starting point for negotiations. Even so they represent a Trump wish list.
White House Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said:“There’s a certain philosophy wrapped up in the budget and that is — we are no longer going to measure compassion by the number of programs or the number of people on those programs. We’re not going to measure our success by how much money we spend, but by how many people we actually help. We need folks to work. We need people to go to work. If you’re on food stamps, and you're able-bodied, we need you to go to work. If you’re on disability insurance and you're not supposed to be, we need you to work. There’s a dignity to work, and there’s a necessity to work.”
Many of the programs cut help provide work for people, however, no doubt Mulvaney along with his Republican colleagues maintain that the private sector can do this. While it is doubtful it can, the cuts make sure the government does not compete with the private sector and keeps wages up as people are faced with the dignity of work at starvation wages or simply starving. Of course Trump wants to encourage government programs to tackle fraud. He wants to tighten the rules of programs for people with disabilities as his advisers claim the programs are riddled with fraud. However, a federal study last year showed that there were already 17 anti-fraud programs but the U.S. needs even more just as it needs to spend more on defense. Mulvaney claims that his budget puts the taxpayer first.
Bernie Sanders had a less positive view of the budget. He tweeted: [/url"]It’s a disgrace that Trump would give billions in tax cuts to the 1 percent and make huge cuts to programs for the elderly, children, sick & poor." [url= t=_blank]Sanders the senior Democrat on the Senate Budget Committee also asked reporters: “If I’m a Republican member of the House, do you really think I’m looking forward to going home to whatever state I came from to say, ‘Yeah, I just voted for incredibly large tax breaks for billionaires. Oh, by the way, we’re going to cut Head Start and child care and after-school programs and health care and education’?" Some Republicans worried about the magnitude of the cuts and the response in their own constituencies. William Hoagland , a former Republican Senate budget aide said: “I think we do need healthcare reform. I think we do need welfare reform. But the kinds of reductions that he’s talking about go exactly against the states that brought [Trump] to the dance, so to speak. The argument can be made that there are certainly programs that are not achieving their goals. That doesn’t mean we should take the money away and forget about it.”
The White House is making an assumption of percent percent yearly economic growth more than the present 1.9 percent rate. It also assumes that Trump's tax reform plans will go into effect. This is supposed to offset an increase in spending that includes $200 billion for new infrastructure projects. A critical article on the budget claims that the budget would not create jobs or economic growth as Trump promised in his campaign but the opposite:Were this proposal enacted, it would put a large and rapidly growing drag on economic growth going forward. All else equal, job losses stemming from this budget’s spending cuts would total 177,000 in 2018, 357,000 in 2019, and 1.4 million in 2020. While it gets increasingly hard to estimate precise numbers further into the future, the fiscal drag just increases dramatically after 2020.


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