Trump Signs Bill to Cut Budget in 180 Federal Agencies

Tuesday, 14 March, 2017 - 07:45

The executive order directs Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney to "propose a plan to reorganize governmental functions and eliminate unnecessary agencies ... components of agencies and agency programs," according to the text released by the White House.

The release of Trump’s budget, which comes as the Republican president is facing an intraparty revolt over proposed legislation to replace Obamacare, could open another fight among republicans who control both houses of congress. To keep the government running, lawmakers will need to approve a spending plan later this year.

The White House has released few details about Trump's budget, other than making clear the president wants to boost military spending by US$54 billion and is seeking equivalent cuts in non-defense discretionary programs.

But several agencies, including the State Department and the Environmental Protection Agency, have been asked to prepare scenarios for steep reductions, according to officials familiar with the discussions.

President Donald Trump is expected to unveil his budget for the 2018 fiscal year on Thursday. Many conservative Republicans would welcome warmly proposed cuts to domestic programs that would pay for a military buildup.

More moderate Republicans are less enthusiastic and worry Trump's budget could force lawmakers to choose between opposing the president or backing reductions in popular programs such as aid for disabled children and hot meals for the elderly.

One senior Republican aide, who referred to Trump’s budget as a “slash and burn” proposal, said one fear of some House lawmakers was that they would be pressured to back big spending cuts only to have them rejected by the Senate, where Republicans hold a slimmer majority. The risk for House members is that their votes could prompt a backlash in the 2018 congressional elections.

Source: Telesur.