Trump’s 2021 budget: spends with abandon, cuts to the bone

The border wall and military spending get boosts, but the agencies addressing education, health and housing are cut by double-digits.



February 13, 2020 - 9:41 AM

Copies of President Donald Trump's budget were delivered Monday. Photo by Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc/Getty Images/TNS

President Trump’s latest budget proposal cuts spending with more abandon than purpose. The administration’s plan slashes expenditures not to tame deficits, recognize economic realities or enable investments. These are cuts for their own sake, ending programs and services as an end in itself.

Trump’s budget would shrink spending on the Environmental Protection Agency by 26%, the U.S. Agency for International Development by 22% and the Department of Housing and Urban Development by 15%. It would reduce health care subsidies under Medicaid and the Affordable Care Act by $1 trillion, food stamps by $181 billion and disability programs by $75 billion over the next decade.

While a deadly virus is threatening a global pandemic, the administration proposes a 16% cut to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. With the Democratic presidential candidates debating how to stem $1.5 trillion in outstanding higher education debt, it would reduce subsidized college loans and eliminate debt forgiveness for teachers and others in public-service professions. As the Food and Drug Administration grapples with the spread of vaping, it would strip nicotine regulation from the agency entirely and turn it over to a new bureaucracy within the Department of Health and Human Services — which, by the way, faces a 9% cut.

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