May 22, 2017
President Donald Trump's first major budget proposal on Tuesday will include massive cuts to Medicaid and Social Security, among other safety net programs, according to new reports.
The Washington Postwrote on Monday that the budget will include $800 billion in Medicaid cuts over the next 10 years, which the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has estimated would slash benefits for 10 million low-income people.
It will also call for giving states more power to stiffen work requirements for people receiving federal assistance, which could tighten the limits on who can access anti-poverty payments and for how long, the Post's Damian Paletta wrote.
"Regular folks need Medicaid. Nursing home care especially. These cuts are just cruel, and all because they want to cut taxes for the rich," tweeted Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii).
Trump vowed on the campaign trail not to cut Medicaid, Medicare, or Social Security, but much like the majority of his pledges, that seems to have gone by the wayside. The budget is also expected to include massive cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), as well as Social Security's Supplemental Security Income program, which supports the poor and disabled.
"Donald Trump's frequent promises to protect Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid were a cornerstone of his campaign," said Nancy Altman, president of Social Security Works. "But if reports are correct, the budget he is releasing this Tuesday will be a flagrant violation of that pledge."
"In true Orwellian fashion, Trump budget director Mick Mulvaney claims that cuts to Social Security Disability Insurance are somehow not cuts to Social Security," Altman said. "That is analogous to saying cuts to the Marines are not cuts to our military budget....This budget is an utter betrayal of the voters who believed Trump's repeated promises."
The Associated Press also reported that the budget will include $1.6 billion for the contentious U.S.-Mexico border wall and a $2.6 billion hike for border security programs.
At least some of the proposals face an uphill battle in Congress. Ron Haskins, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, told the Post that Republican lawmakers are not going to "feel a strong compulsion to follow the president."
"They are not afraid of him," Haskins said.
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