Trump's $4 trillion budget arrives on Capitol Hill

Jane Richards
May 24, 2017

While the plan does not make any cuts to Social Security or Medicare benefits, the budget does attempt to reform the welfare system.

FDA's total program-level spending would rise by $456 million or almost 10%, to $5.116 billion, mostly due to increases in salaries and expenses; spending on programs affecting human drugs would see the largest increase of $287 million, up to $1.612 billion.

The proposed budget refocuses decades of USA spending - both foreign and domestic - to reflect Trump's belief that too much taxpayer money is simply given away.

Many of these are so abused-the number of working-age adults on Social Security disability has jumped to a startling 1 in 20-that we have gone from assisting the unemployed to paying people not to work.

This is a nightmare scenario for people who are barely scraping by as it is, but it gets worse for persons with disabilities.

"(The) State (Department) still has some flexibility to come up with a final plan on that, but I do know that writ large we have proposed to move several countries from a direct grant programme to a loan guarantee programme", he said.

Of course, a president's budget is never adopted wholesale by Congress or, in some years, even in parts.

The Senate's No. 2 Republican, John Cornyn of Texas, said the Trump plan joins a tradition of White House budgets that are "basically dead on arrival".

Refugee Benefits. The proposed budget makes the argument that the US should reduce the number of refugees it brings into this country because those fleeing persecution in their home countries often end up using public assistance, including 50 percent who were on Medicaid in 2015.

FINANCIAL REGULATION - Two Wall Street financial regulators, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Securities and Exchange Commission, would face cuts or major structural changes under Trump's budget proposal.

"While we appreciate the administration's focus on reducing the debt, when using more realistic assumptions, the president's budget does not add up", Maya MacGuineas, head of the bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

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Senators know that these programs touch nearly every part of the country. These savings are in addition to the $610 billion in proposed Medicaid cuts in the budget, according to The New York Times.

$2.6 billion — The amount for border security, includes $1.6 billion to "plan, design, and construct a physical wall along the southern border".

-The Poor, Part III: Trump's budget would cut funding for the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program by $22 billion over the next decade.

It's called "The New Foundation for American Greatness" but White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney says it should be called "A Taxpayer First Budget". It would be eliminated entirely under Trump's budget for the fiscal year of 2018.

Food stamp cuts would drive millions from the program, while a wave of Medicaid cuts could deny nursing home care to millions of elderly poor people.

The Trump budget requests 70 Lockheed Martin Corp F-35s and 14 Boeing Co F/A-18E/F fighters - the same quantities anticipated by Obama's administration for fiscal 2018. "We finally have a president who's willing to actually balance the budget".

Based on continued low labor-force and productivity growth, the Congressional Budget Office projects 1.9% growth over the next decade-that is roughly in line with the average progress of the economy in this century through both expansions and recessions. Even so, the GOP backlash to Trump's budget was striking, as few lawmakers apart from the top leaders in the House and Senate seemed inclined to give the president much deference.

On taxes, Trump's promises an overhaul that would cut tax rates but rely on erasing tax breaks and economic growth to avoid adding to the deficit.

Robots and artificial intelligence are not killing too many jobs but rather businesses are not investing in enough of them, productivity growth is sinking, and American industry continues to lose its competitive edge. The CDC's global health programmes that monitor and respond to disease outbreaks around the world will take a 17% cut.

Like his predecessors, for instance, Trump proposes cutting the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program, which aids state prisons and county jails burdened by the unauthorized immigrant population.

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