UPDATED 8:09 AM PT — Tuesday, February 11, 2020
The Trump administration is bracing for a new battle with congressional Democrats over the proposed federal budget for fiscal year 2021.
The $4.8 trillion budget, unveiled Monday, has proposed major cuts to wasteful spending, while keeping non-defense spending at $590 billion and allocating roughly $740 billion on national defense. Contrary to Democrat claims of cutting safety nets, the new budget still includes a massive $3.5 trillion in Medicare, social security and the like.
“What this budget allows us to do is two things: really identify where we can start going back and reinvesting in to domestic accounts here at home, in addition to work on new opportunities, new openings,” explained Jim Richardson, director of U.S. Foreign Assistance Resources for the State Department.
Economists have said the new budget offers a fiscal stimulus to grow the U.S. economy as advocated by renowned scientist John Maynard Keynes in the 1930s. This comes at the expense of foreign aid, which has proven wasteful and problematic after the impeachment hoax centered around Ukraine.
More importantly, however, the new budget offers a practical plan to secure U.S. borders and improve the immigration system.
“The budget supports U.S. border security by strengthening visa vetting, targeting illicit pathways that trans-national criminal organizations are using to traffick drugs, money, weapons, and even human beings,” said Stephen Biegun, Deputy Secretary of State.
The defense budget remains largely unchanged from last year, except some funds are reallocated from the U.S. Navy toward nuclear forces as well as research and development. This measure is aimed at securing America’s leading role in innovation and technology as well as protecting it from foreign acquisitions.
“This budget is the means from which we will achieve our readiness goals by 2022 and set us on the path to future budgets, which will help us achieve our modernization objectives by 2028, ” stated Maj. Gen. Paul A. Chamberlain, deputy assistant secretary of the U.S. Army.
Additionally, the new budget cuts funding for the Commerce Department by 37 percent, the EPA by 26 percent and HUD by 15 percent. This move falls in line with President Trump’s agenda of deregulation and free market enterprise. For their part, the Departments of Health and Education will get 9 percent and 8 percent less money this year as well.
“We’re doing a lot of things that are good, including waste and fraud,” said President Trump. “Tremendous waste and tremendous fraud, so we’re doing that in terms of certain programs.”
This hardly makes government bureaucrats happy and Democrats have already suggested the budget is “dead on arrival” in Congress, while some Republicans may call for deeper cuts to spending.
In the coming weeks, fiscal debates are likely to produce allegations of partisan obstruction and inflammatory rhetoric in he midst of this election cycle, but this is all expected to end in a bipartisan compromise of sorts.
“And Congress will always have a different view,” said Richardson. “Ultimately, the president will sign a document at the end of the day,”
As a result of yet another partisan conundrum, some of the president’s proposals could be watered down. All the while, the national debt clock is ticking up tens-of-thousands of dollars per second.