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Trump Budget Puts Fear First, Not America

This is the America First budget,” says White House Office of Management and Budget director Mick Mulvaney of the budget blueprint just released by our ill Duce. Yet the Trump budget blueprint shows an obsession with others, with outsiders, and an obliviousness to the general welfare we achieve through good government.

The President introduces the budget saying that his “Government… puts the needs of its own people first.” Yet he defines needs as safety, “because without safety, there can be no prosperity.”

Thus begins a fearful, outward-looking budget that lists these five priorities, in this order:

My Budget Blueprint for 2018:

  • provides for one of the largest increases in defense spending without increasing the debt;
  • significantly increases the budget for immigration enforcement at the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security;
  • includes additional resources for a wall on the southern border with Mexico, immigration judges, expanded detention capacity, U.S. Attorneys, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Border Patrol;
  • increases funding to address violent crime and reduces opioid abuse; and
  • puts America first by keeping more of America’s hard-earned tax dollars here at home [Pres. Donald J. Trump, introduction to FY2018 budget blueprint, 2017.03.15].

The Trump budget spends $54 billion more on the military, yet it cuts 28%, $10.9 billion, from foreign aid, the assistance that often keeps us from having to deploy our military. It tells Congress to find four billion American dollars (not Mexican pesos) to spend on the border wall, but it can’t find a ninth of that figure to keep Big Bird on TV:

“There’s a lot of programs that simply cannot justify their existence and that’s where we zeroed in,” Mulvaney said. One of those programs, apparently, is Sesame Street: Mulvaney confirmed that the administration will seek to eliminate the federal government’s involvement with the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which directs funds to public radio and TV stations. The CPB receives $445 million annually in federal funding, which Trump wants to drop to nearly zero in the coming years [Russell Berman, “President Trump’s ‘Hard Power’ Budget,” The Atlantic, 2017.03.16].

Trump’s FY2018 increase in war spending could fund public broadcasting for 121 years, or the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (also cut by Trump) for 13,500 years.

The President gives the Department of Homeland Security more money to go chase bad guys, but it takes $667 million away from the grants FEMA gives to states and local governments to cope with disasters. In other words, if a problem calls for helmets and guns, Trump is there, but if the disaster just calls for sandbags and shovels or just planning ahead with preventative measures, well, states, you’re on your own.

This “America First Budget” eliminates the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, Community Development Block Grants, rural water and wastewater loans and grants, AmeriCorps, the McGovern-Dole Food for Education Program, the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program that supports before- and after-school programs and summer learning programs conducted by 33 different South Dakota school districts and non-profits, Impact Aid Support Payments for Federal Property (worth $4.5 million to the Douglas school district), the Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy that the 2007 Congress and President Bush created to drive energy innovation technologies, the Weatherization Assistance Program, the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program that spent nearly $21 million in FY2014 to help poor South Dakotans keep their heat on through the winter, health professions and nursing training programs, the Flood Hazard Mapping Program, the Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance Account, the Energy Star labeling program, the Small Business Administration’s Growth Accelerators program that helped launch the Zeal Center for Entrepreneurship in Sioux Falls, and much more. Yet amidst all those cuts, the Trump budget doesn’t get around to identifying funding for rebuilding American infrastructure, the one big domestic investment Trump has touted.

Trump FY2018 Budget Blueprint, percentage cuts and boosts by Cabinet department. Modified from Reuters, 2016.03.16: Reuters shows a 13.2% increase for HUD, but the White House budget document reads, "The President’s 2018 Budget requests $40.7 billion in gross discretionary funding for HUD, a $6.2 billion or 13.2 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level."
Trump FY2018 Budget Blueprint, percentage cuts and boosts by Cabinet department. Modified from Reuters, 2016.03.16: Reuters shows a 13.2% increase for HUD, but the White House budget document reads, “The President’s 2018 Budget requests $40.7 billion in gross discretionary funding for HUD, a $6.2 billion or 13.2 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level.”

The Trump budget blueprint uses forms of the word eliminate 61 times. It uses the word help 20 times.

The Trump budget spends more money on hurting others and less money on helping Americans and our neighbors.

The Trump budget builds more fences and security alarms by hocking our furniture and slashes our grocery budget. The Trump budget leaves us sitting on the floor eating Ramen noodles in a better-barricaded house that’s harder to get around in and harder to visit.

This budget blueprint puts fear first, not Americans and not American ideals.


  1. mike from iowa 2017-03-16 08:50

    Democrats have threatened a gubmint shutdown if wingnuts attempt to attach a rider to pay for wall construction to the must be passed appropriations bill. Schumer sez Dems will vote in lockstep to filibuster and it sounds like some wingnuts will join them.

  2. jerry 2017-03-16 10:16

    Meals on Wheels, bye bye in the budget of der fuhrer as well. Old folks are just gonna have to die of starvation while we get a new gun.

  3. jerry 2017-03-16 10:20

    It is official too, Gorka’s pin is that of the Hungarian Nazi Party. So we have that going for us as well, the key advisor to trump is a member for life in the Nazi party. Probably should be enough to get his arse deported, but in trump’s America, nothing is certain only uncertainty.

  4. Donald Pay 2017-03-16 10:28

    Cuckoo and as credible as “wiretaps at Trump Tower.” Scott Walker does this all the time: submit cuckoo budgets then let’s the legislative branch fix it. Then he claims no responsibility for anything bad that happens. It’s DOA.

  5. Robert McTaggart 2017-03-16 10:33

    Don’t you think “Wiretaps” is going to be the next big play on Broadway?

  6. Loren 2017-03-16 10:56

    Watch Kristi go nuts waiting for the talking points to arrive so she can explain her vote for this House legislation. Oh, wait! This cuts ag $$$$ BIGLY! What to do? Oh, what to do??

  7. mikeyc, that's me! 2017-03-16 11:39

    I’m talking to my microwave oven again.

  8. Roger Elgersma 2017-03-16 12:23

    First thing in his campaign, Trump slammed John McCain. That was just a bully move to show he rules. Now his budget is just a bully move to show we rule. He really needs to get more civilized.

  9. Roger Cornelius 2017-03-16 12:32

    Hopefully republicans in both the House and Senate will look at this budget with the 2018 mid-terms in mind. The republican in-fighting in the past few days over Trumpcare shows that they are drawing a line in the sand over the healthcare plan that will put many of their constituents at risk and may cost them a vote.
    John Thune, Mike Rounds, and Kristi Noem will at some point will be forced to come home and discuss with their constituents the affects of these cuts.

  10. moses6 2017-03-16 14:46

    welcome home photo op.Obama repeal Noem, no rplacement and Slick Mike who need subsideies to balance the state govt.How about those 21 percent cuts to ag.

  11. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-03-17 07:12

    Roger C., yes, this budget makes town halls more important than ever. We are talking about serious cuts to real South Dakota programs. Thune, Rounds, and Noem need to come home and explain to South Dakota why we can do without those programs, or why we should let Washington devolve those costs to our state and local governments.

  12. mike from iowa 2017-03-19 19:55

    Trump budget chief who wants to cut Meals on Wheels says he is sacrificing by giving up business cards

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