Press Releases

Trump Budget a Republican Lowlight Reel

f t # e
Washington, March 16, 2017 | comments

Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) compiled the following lowlight reel from President Trump’s first attempt at a budget blueprint.

"Budgets reflect values. President Trump wants to spend more on defense and border security while making huge cuts to what they defend: our people, our health, and our environment. These extreme cuts will hit my constituents particularly hard, including many federal workers at the State Department and Environmental Protection Agency. But their pain will be felt across the entire country. I don't believe that the American people want their health, education, safety, or environment to suffer from severe cuts, and I don't believe that they will support this radical budget which cuts the agencies which protect them," said Rep. Beyer.

1.       Cruel cuts to the most vulnerable: The Trump Budget cuts funding for WIC, the nutrition program for women, infants and children. It eliminates Community Development Block Grants, which provide critical funding to local programs and projects around the country such as Meals on Wheels and low-income housing. It cuts a further billion dollars from programs at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which create affordable housing and revitalize struggling communities.  It eliminates the Legal Services Corporation, which provides legal assistance to those who can’t afford it themselves, making our system of justice even less equitable. The budget also does away with the regional commissions and authorities, such as the Appalachian Regional Commission, which help the poorest areas of our country.

2.       Slashing environmental protection:  The budget decimates the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), eliminating more than 50 programs and 3,200 jobs. This includes discontinuing funding for international climate-change programs, cutting funding for the Office of Research and Development in half and large reductions of funding for the Superfund cleanup program and the Office of Enforcement and Compliance. The attack on our environment doesn’t stop with the EPA. Trump cuts funding from NASA’s study of Earth science, terminating four missions aimed at understanding climate-change. At the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the budget slashes $250 million from coastal research programs that ready communities for rising seas and worsening storms. At the Department of Energy, the budget eliminates climate-change prevention programs, including pledged payments to United Nations climate-change programs, and eliminates the successful Energy Star program.

3.       Threatening our health and eroding our scientific edge: The Trump Budget cuts the National Institutes of Health by nearly 20 percent, curtailing research into our most pressing medical challenges. Trump cuts $900 million from the Office of Science at the Department of Energy and eliminates ARPA-E which is the source of some of the world’s most cutting-edge energy research.

4.       Reducing our role in the world: While boosting defense funding, Trump neuters our ability to use diplomacy and aid to protect our national security without resorting to force. State and the U.S. Agency for International Development face cuts of nearly 29 percent: This includes eliminating climate-change initiatives, slashing foreign aid, contributions to the United Nations, funding for development banks, the US Institute of Peace and valuable cultural exchanges.

5.       Just plain counterproductive: The Trump Budget further cuts $239 million from an already reduced IRS budget, despite the impact this has had on taxpayer services and the fact that a dollar spent on tax enforcement yields four dollars to the Treasury.

6.       American road rage: The Trump budget reduces investments in transportation infrastructure, with cuts to the popular TIGER grant program. It also greatly reduces the New Starts program’s ability to fund transit projects. Both programs are heavily relied upon in the region for road and Metro improvements.

7.       Targeting Immigrants and Weakening our Security: While the budget wastes billions on a needless and ineffective border wall and a cruel deportation policy, Trump cuts hundreds of millions from anti-terrorism and disaster relief programs, including grants to local first responders at our airports, and makes travelers pay more every time they get on a plane.

8.       Who needs culture?: Trumps annihilates federal support for cultural programs, including eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, museum and library funding, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

9.       The Miseducation of Donald Trump: The budget cuts billions from teacher training, after-school and summer programs, and aid programs to first-generation and low-income students. It cuts work-study support, making college even more expensive. Where would this money go? In part to funding private school vouchers increasingly discredited by the latest research.