Politics

Trump’s Budget Would Build Border Wall, Expand Military, but Cut Anti-Poverty Programs

President Donald Trump is preparing to unveil his budget proposal. It would see the United States balance its budget within 15 years, assuming that economic growth remains consistently high, thus bringing in more tax revenues. Trump’s budget includes $8.6 billion for a border wall and would also expand defense spending.

In total, however, the budget seeks to cut $2.7 trillion in spending over 10 years. The cuts would come from non-defense-related expenditures, including welfare programs and foreign aid. In many cases, spending would be cut by 5 percent or more.

Besides a large bump in defense spending, Trump’s budget would also increase spending on veteran healthcare by 10 percent and would allocate more funding towards anti-opiate programs. The president and Congress will have to agree to a budget by October 1st or else risk another government shutdown.

In the fiscal year 2019, the deficit reached roughly $900 billion dollars as America’s public debt expanded to over $22 trillion. While the American economy has soared, according to various economic indicators, profligate spending and extensive tax cuts have resulted in ever-rising debt.

President Trump’s budget would see the deficit shrink over time, however; it relies on an assumption that some economists are calling unrealistic. Current budget and debt projections of Trump’s budget assume that the economy will continue to expand at a fast rate over the next fifteen years. Many economists believe such growth is not sustainable and that a slowdown is inevitable.

The Democratic leadership in both the House and the Senate have already rejected the budget and any substantial increase in spending on Trump’s proposed border wall. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer released a joint statement, noting: “President Trump hurt millions of Americans and caused widespread chaos when he recklessly shut down the government to try to get his expensive and ineffective wall, which he promised would be paid for by Mexico. 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. We hope he learned his lesson.”

The opinions expressed here by contributors are their own and are not the view of OpsLens which seeks to provide a platform for experience-driven commentary on today's trending headlines in the U.S. and around the world. Have a different opinion or something more to add on this topic? Contact us for guidelines on submitting your own experience-driven commentary.
Brian Brinker

Brian Brinker is a political consultant and has an M.A in Global Affairs from American University.

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