Trump pushes border security in budget
by Harvest Prude
Posted 3/11/19, 02:44 pm
WASHINGTON—President Donald Trump unveiled a $4.75 trillion budget for fiscal year 2020 on Monday that includes a request to Congress for an additional $8.6 billion to pay for a 722-mile wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. The 150-page proposal, dubbed “A Budget for a Better America: Promises Kept. Taxpayers First,” outlines the White House priority of boosting defense spending and infrastructure and slashing expenditures in other departments. The proposal asks for $2.7 trillion in spending cuts, including a call for steep cuts to entitlement programs like Medicare. In addition to asking for a nearly 5 percent increase in defense spending, other priorities include funding for the Space Force, increased spending on veterans healthcare, and addressing the nation’s opioid crisis. The Trump administration is no longer attempting to balance the federal budget within 10 years, and instead sets a goal to balance it by 2034.
Democratic leadership declared the proposal dead before arrival after Reuters first reported the border wall emphasis. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., released a joint statement, saying, “Congress refused to fund his wall and he was forced to admit defeat and reopen the government. The same thing will repeat itself if he tries this again.”
White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow told Fox News Sunday that Trump is prepared for another budget fight over the wall: “He’s going to stay with his wall and he’s going to stay with the border security theme.” The government will shut down again if Congress and the White House cannot agree on funding levels before Oct. 1, the start of the 2020 fiscal year.
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Harvest is a reporter for WORLD based in Washington, D.C.