March 16 (UPI) — President Donald Trump on Thursday released a proposed budget that could cut funding to the Environmental Protection Agency by 31 percent and the State Department by 29 percent while boosting military funds.
Stacks of the blueprint — titled “America First” — were delivered to the Government Printing Office bookstore and a 62-page document was posted on the White House website early Thursday.
Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney on Wednesday told reporters the White House proposal will cut the EPA’s budget down from $8.1 billion to $5.7 billion. About 3,200 positions — or more than 20 percent — in the EPA’s workforce of 15,000 would be cut.
The proposed budget would end funding to former President Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan — his signature effort to combat climate change by regulating power plants’ carbon dioxide emissions. EPA programs such as the $73 million-a-year Chesapeake Bay cleanup project and the Energy Star program, designed to improve energy efficiency and save consumers money, would lose all funding.
“You can’t drain the swamp and leave all the people in it. So, I guess the first place that comes to mind will be the Environmental Protection Agency,” Mulvaney told reporters. “The president wants a smaller EPA. He thinks they overreach, and the budget reflects that.”
In a Gallup poll released Wednesday, 59 percent of Americans said protecting the environment is more important than continuing use of traditional energy, such as fossil fuels. In the poll, 71 percent of people said the United States should focus on alternative energy to solve U.S. energy problems, while 23 percent said the country should emphasize the production of oil, gas and coal.
The State Department’s core programs face a $10 billion cut. The budget proposal would eliminate climate-change initiatives and slash foreign aid funding, United Nations contributions and cultural exchanges. The proposal also calls for cuts to State Department operations in war-torn areas such as Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Overall, the State Department’s budget would shrink from $52.8 billion to $37.6 billion.
Trump’s proposal would eliminate funding to 19 agencies including the African Development Foundation, the Chemical Safety Board, the National Endowment for the Arts, the U.S. Institute on Peace and the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness.
The winners in Trump’s proposed budget are the Defense Department which would see a $52.3 billion increase, the Department of Veteran’s Affairs which would see a $4.4 billion increase and the Department of HomelandSsecurity which will see a $2.8 billion increase.
“There’s no question this is a hard-power budget,” Mulvaney said. “It is not a soft-power budget. This is a hard-power budget. And that was done intentionally. The president very clearly wants to send a message to our allies and our potential adversaries that this is a strong-power administration.”
Trump’s budget requires approval from Congress.
“The administration’s budget isn’t going to be the budget,” said Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. “We do the budget here. The administration makes recommendations, but Congress does budgets.”
The country has not had a budget in eight years. Yes, MB Obama and the Congress FAILED to produce and pass a budget the last years eight years.
Trump’s Budget Director: ‘Our $20 Trillion National Debt is a Crisis’
(CNSNews.com) – Mick Mulvaney, who serves as director of President Donald Trump’s Office of Management and Budget, said in a message introducing Trump’s “America First” budget blueprint today that the $20 trillion debt of the federal government is a “crisis” that must be addressed.
Trump’s budget calls for completely eliminating federal funding for numerous agencies—including the National Endowment for the Arts and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting–and refocusing the use of federal tax dollars in order to “redefine the proper role of the federal government.”
“The president’s commitment to fiscal responsibility is historic,” Mulvaney said in his statement. “Not since early in President Reagan’s first term have more tax dollars been saved and more government inefficiency and waste been targeted.
“Every corner of the federal budget is scrutinized, every program tested, every penny of taxpayer money watched over,” said Mulvaney.
“Our $20 trillion national debt is a crisis, not just for the nation, but for every citizen,” said the OMB director.
“Each American’s share of the debt is more than $60,000 and growing,” he said. “It is a challenge of great stakes, but one the American people can solve.
“American families make tough decision every day about their own budgets; it is time Washington does the same,” he said.
When President Barack Obama took office on Jan. 20, 2009, the federal debt was $10.6 trillion, according to the Treasury. By the time Obama left office, on Jan. 20, 2017, it had grown to more than $19.9 trillion—an increase in debt of 9.3 trillion, or almost 88 percent.
OMB Director Mulvaney was a Republican member of the House of Representatives from South Carolina before Trump named him to be his budget director. He was first elected to Congress in 2010, when the Republicans took back control of the House in the first election after Congress enacted the Affordable Care Act, AKA Obamacare.
Mulvaney: ‘We Don’t Balance the Budget, But We Do Reprioritize Spending’
(CNSNews.com) – President Trump has just unveiled his “America First” budget plan, which comes with the title, “A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again.”
The discretionary budget boosts spending on the military, homeland security, veterans, and school choice by cutting spending elsewhere – the EPA, HHS, the State Department and wasteful grant programs, to name a few.
Trump’s budget comes with a message to Congress, White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said early Thursday morning on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
We’re sending a message to Congress, and the message is very, very clear. We want more money to defend the nation; more money to defend the border; more money to enforce the laws, and we want to do it without adding to the deficit this year.
We’re not balancing the budget here. All we did is take a dollar away from over here and reprioritize it over there. But we don’t balance the budget, but we do reprioritize spending, and that’s the message to Congress.
So if they have a better way to defend the nation, to enforce the laws without adding to the deficit, we want to talk about it, but this is the president’s message.
Trump’s Fiscal 2018 budget proposes a 10 percent increase ($52 billion) in defense spending in one year; another $2 billion would go to nuclear weapons.
The Homeland Security Department would get another $2.8 billion (a 6.8 percent hike), with most of the increase ($2.6 billion) spent on Trump’s promised border wall.
The Department of Veterans Affairs gets an additional $4.4 billion, a 5.9 percent increase.
Trump wants $500 million more to spend on opioid addiction prevention and treatment; and he wants $1.4 billion more to expand school choice programs.
On the other side of the ledger, the EPA faces a $2.6 billion (31.4 percent) reduction, resulting in a loss of 3,200 jobs. The Obama administration’s clean power plant program would go away.
Health and Human Services faces a $12.6 billion (16.2 percent) cut: Trump proposes a $5.8 billion reduction in the National Institutes of Health, including the elimination of a division that focuses on global health.
The State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development would lose $10 billion, a 28 percent cut. That means less foreign aid, less money for the United Nations and the World Bank.
The Labor Department loses $2.5 billion, a 20 percent cut. Some jobs training programs would be eliminated.
Trump’s plan also would eliminate $1.2 billion program that supports before and after school programs. And many independent agencies supported by tax dollars would be gone (see list below).
“Morning Joe” asked Mulvaney on Thursday what he would say to teachers who will have some of their training programs cut; or low-income families who rely on money for after-school programs.
Mulvaney said a lot of the programs to be cut “sound great” but “a lot of them simply don’t work,” he said.
“I can’t justify them to the folks who are paying the taxes. I can’t go to the auto worker in Ohio and say please give me some of your money so I can do this program over here someplace else that really isn’t helping anybody. I can ask them to pay for defense,” he added.
Mulvaney said the targeted programs either haven’t worked, can’t justify their existence, or are duplicative. “And many of the examples you just gave, there are other programs that can do the exact same thing.”
For example, Mulvaney noted that there are more than 50 federal job-training programs. “Clearly there’s got to be some opportunity there for combination and savings.”
The budget calls for the complete elimination of funding for other independent agencies, including: the African Development Foundation; the Appalachian Regional Commission; the Chemical Safety Board; the Corporation for National and Community Service; the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; the Delta Regional Authority; the Denali Commission; the Institute of Museum and Library Services; the Inter-American Foundation; the U.S. Trade and Development Agency; the Legal Services Corporation; the National Endowment for the Arts; the National Endowment for the Humanities; the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation; the Northern Border Regional Commission; the Overseas Private Investment Corporation; the United States Institute of Peace; the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness; and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.