He wants to increase spending for the military (obviously), ‘The Wall’ (obviously) and slash funding for the environment and the arts (obviously) – here’s your guide to the president’s budget
In what was always expected to be an aggressive and controversial budget, with America First: A Budget Blueprint To Make America Great Again (see here), Donald Trump has outlined his priorities – the military – and what he doesn’t care about – the environment, the arts and Africa. Here's a quick guide to what he’s proposing for 2018, a budget that he says will “set free the dreams of every American”. Tl;dr – Trump is very interested in arming America beyond belief and not much else. The bill must still be approved by Congress, but it’s for sure a statement of intent regarding making America “great again”.
“Discontinues funding for the Clean Power Plan, international climate change programs, climate change research and partnership programs, and related efforts — saving over $100 million for the American taxpayer”. He however says that he’ll provide funding for clean drinking water. He would withdraw funding to clean up Chesapeake Bay and The Great Lakes.
Trump has proposed a total elimination of funding for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, created in 1965. These are agencies that provide vital financial support for artists and their activities. Trump is the first president to call for scrapping them.
Unsurprisingly, this is the biggest winner. The one thing Trump has always been keen to prioritise is military spending. His new budget promises a colossal $52 billion boost to the Pentagon, which will apparently help expand “equipment” and “capability” for any potential wars the US might stumble into. Nuclear weapons will also get an annual $2 billion dollar boost, in an effort to build a nuclear force that is “second to none”. From rebuilding our Armed Forces to beefing up our border security and safeguarding our Nation’s sovereignty, this Budget makes security priority one”.
Remember Trump saying that “Mexico would pay for the wall”. Obviously they won’t, but he still wants to do it anyway, to the tune of a couple of billion. The report reads: “Secures the borders of the United States by investing $2.6 billion in high-priority tactical in-frastructure (sic) and border security technology, including funding to plan, design, and construct a physical wall along the southern border as directed by the President’s January 25, 2017 Executive Order. This investment would strengthen border security, helping stem the flow of people and drugs illegally crossing the U.S. borders”. He also wants to fund the hiring of 500 new Border Patrol Agents and 1,000 more immigration officers.
As we all know by now, Trump just doesn’t really care about poor people. This is made pretty clear in the new budget, which promises to slash funding for public transport and eliminate assistance for anti-poverty social programs. This will be felt particularly strongly in counties like Appalachia and the Mississippi Delta, as well as among the homeless (Trump has promised to abolish the US Interagency Council on Homelessness). “We are going to do more with less, and make the government lean and accountable to people,” Trump justified. “We have made the tough choices that have been put off for too long.”
Trump wants to eliminate funding for the African Development Foundation, an agency that is “the independent U.S. Government agency established by Congress to support and invest in African-owned and led enterprises which improve lives and livelihoods in poor and vulnerable African communities”.
A cut of $5.8 billion to the National Institutes of Health’s spending, but a supposed investment (no figure given) “in mental health activities that are awarded to high-performing entities and focus on high priority areas, such as suicide prevention, serious mental illness, and children’s mental health”. $403 million in nursing training programs to be cut.
“Supports efforts at the Department’s law enforcement components by providing a combined increase of $175 million above the 2017 annualized CR level to target the worst of the worst criminal organizations and drug traffickers in order to address violent crime, gun-related deaths, and the opioid epidemic”. Trump wants to go for the “worst of the worst” criminal organisations and also attempt to combat America’s accelerated opiate issue. Read our report on that here.