Poor and disabled big losers in Trump budget; military wins

Poor and disabled big losers in Trump budget; military wins

Sen. John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, said Monday that Trump's budget was "dead on arrival" when it gets to Congress.

White House allies dispute such complaints, but at times Trump himself hardly seems to have his finger on the pulse of lawmakers of either party.

Some moderate Republican lawmakers would prefer not to think about Trump's ultra-conservative plan at all.

"I thought Mexico was going to pay for the wall, why is this in our budget?"

Funding for US diplomacy and foreign aid funding will be cut by nearly a third, and military spending increased substantially under President Donald Trump's $4.1 trillion budget plan for 2018.

"Yes, you have to have compassion for folks who are receiving the federal funds, but also you have to have compassion for the folks who are paying it", he said. The budget includes $471 million for the ACA exchanges in 2017, $453 of which is to go to program operations such as eligibility, call center operations, and information technology.

But it also includes a host of controversial program cuts and cancellations that have already drawn harsh attacks from Democrats in Congress.

Among the more Trumpian touches is a plan to save $40bn by barring undocumented immigrants from collecting tax credits aimed at low- and middle-income families especially with children.

Mr. Trump, however, also promised not to cut Medicaid on the campaign trail. "The appropriations process has to be bipartisan", he explained.

On Tuesday morning, the Trump administration unveiled a budget proposal that would make Margaret Thatcher weep.

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"It's pretty hardcore", Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) told reporters. Such is the case for affordable housing programs including the CDBG and HOME Investment Partnerships programs, for which the proposed budget drops all or most new federal funding. Those panels will begin writing roughly a dozen spending bills, which need to pass both chamber and be signed into law by the President before the end of September to avoid a government shutdown.

The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a bipartisan public policy organization, said the plan relied on "rosy assumptions", gimmicks and unrealistic cuts.

"It was in all honesty the most efficient way to look at it, because if we said it's going to add to the deficit, then we have to go into more detail than what's in the summary right now", he said. Democrats said the large cuts are draconian and unproductive.

The White House released a detailed budget proposal Tuesday that aims to balance the federal budget without cutting Social Security or Medicare spending.

Trump's plan, drawn up by White House budget director Mick Mulvaney, lands as Trump's GOP allies in Congress are grappling with repealing and replacing former President Barack Obama's health care law and looking ahead to a hard rewrite of the loophole-clogged US tax code.

"The budget will not pass in its current state, but people will keep an eye on any sort of indication of corporate tax reform as well as infrastructure spending", said Nadia Lovell, US equity strategist at J.P. Morgan Private Bank in NY. As a result, what many critics of the plan are now suggesting is that Trump's belief is nothing but "an embarrassing mistake". Simply put, as the Wall Street Journal pointed out, the math just doesn't add up.

The budget, which is more a statement of policy than an actual guiding document because of its likelihood to get passed on Capitol Hill, does signal how Trump views government.

Trump's budget would reduce funding for educational and cultural exchanges by 52 percent, including a 47 percent cut to the Fulbright Program, which enables USA citizens to go overseas and brings foreign students to study in the United States.

It is fitting that while President Trump is traveling the world, sealing a weapons deal with Saudi Arabia, he would drop his own kind of bomb on the American people: his budget proposal for the coming fiscal year, titled, of course, "The New Foundation for American Greatness".