CONGRESSIONAL GOP MULLING DEVASTATING CUTS TO U.S. SOCIAL SAFETY NET

Following a difficult vote to replace Obamacare, which entailed massive cuts to health care for America’s poorest, House Republicans are back to the drawing board to take on the fiscal 2018 budget.

On the chopping block again are programs that serve low-income families and children.

The House faces no small task in delivering the president’s request for infrastructure, border wall funding and tax cuts, all while sticking to their pledge to bring down the deficit. Politico reports that the effort for a balanced budget will likely include a more than $400 billion slash to safety-net programs.

While the proposal won’t name specific programs to cut, it will direct committees to determine which programs need scaled back in order to meet the mark.

Politico’s sources indicate likely victims will include food stamps, welfare, income assistance for the disabled and possibly veterans’ benefits.

Republicans find themselves in this position in part due to President Trump’s unwillingness to touch entitlement programs, keeping Social Security and Medicare benefits safe – for now.

White House Budget director Mick Mulvaney, who has been unable to sway the president so far, is working to change the administration’s stance, telling radio host Hugh Hewitt in March that he has begun to “socialize the discussion around here in the West Wing about how important the mandatory spending is to the drivers of our debt.”

In the meantime, House GOP members look to advance the current proposal – which will likely displease moderate Republicans – through a process to bypass potential Democratic filibusters in the Senate, sources told Politico.

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