Trump’s New $4.8T Budget Will Take A Chainsaw To America’s Social Safety Net
President Donald Trump promised during his 2016 campaign that he would not touch funding for Medicare or Medicaid, but according to The Wall Street Journal, his 2020 budget proposal takes an ax to both programs — all while providing yet another boost to defense spending.
Rolling Stone reported that Trump’s $4.8 trillion budget — which has virtually no chance of passing the Democratic-controlled House — offers a window into the president’s priorities.
As part of the $4.4 trillion reduction in federal spending, Trump would target Medicare, cutting $130 billion from its prescription drug program. He would take $292 billion from Medicaid and food stamps, according to the report, and slash another $70 billion by limiting disability benefits.
But the president is not only targeting social safety net programs: the Environmental Protection Agency would see its budget drop by 26 percent, and the Department of Urban Housing and Development would receive a 15 percent budget cut.
Also on the chopping block? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which would get a nine percent reduction in funding, even as the coronavirus continues to present a global threat.
What departments and programs has Trump spared in his budget proposal?
The president’s primary concerns appear to be national defense and his border wall, with the Department of Homeland Security and the National Nuclear Security Administration enjoying increases in his budget proposal, alongside the Department of Veterans Affairs and NASA — and another $2 billion earmarked for his wall along the southern U.S. border.
The cuts to social programs “will be presented as a need to cut the deficit, thereby preserving the health of the economy,” Rolling Stone noted. But in reality, Trump is making room for his wall and defense increases at the expense of America’s most vulnerable populations.