This is the America First budget. In fact, we wrote it using the president’s own words. We went through his speeches. We went through articles that have been written about his policies … and we turned those policies into numbers. (from NPR)
That’s what Mick Mulvaney, director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, said while briefing reporters on Donald’s proposed budget.
How does eliminating the healthcare of 24 million people put America first?
How does eliminating funding for the Independent Chemical Safety Board, which investigates industrial chemical accidents and ensures the safety of the public, put America first?
How does eliminating funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which ensures universal access and helps fund non-profit, community television and radio stations around the country, put America first?
How does defunding the organization that helps train and pay for minorities to access civil rights lawyers, the Legal Services Corporation, put America first?
How does defunding the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation, which makes billions in grants to restore neighborhoods and build low-income housing via Habitat for Humanity and similar organizations, put America first?
How does defunding the Interagency Council on Homelessness, which coordinates 19 different agencies with the goal of ending homelessness, put America first?
How does cutting people at USDA service centers around the country, which coordinate best practices for farmers and ranchers, or defunding rural loans for clean drinking water and sanitation, put America first?
How does cutting the Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency, the only agency that focuses specifically on supporting and growing small business among minorities, or “zeroing out” the vast majority of NOAA’s budget for “coastal and marine management, research, and education” put America first?
How does increasing funding of “school choice” initiatives put America first when the evidence demonstrates that private and charter schools do no better at educating students than public schools, once poverty and race are controlled for? Or is defunding the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant program for college tuition, instead of transferring that money to the Pell Grant program, what puts America first?
How does eliminating research into the fundamental breakthroughs that are driving America’s transition off fossil fuels and to renewable energy, powering soldiers’ advanced warfighting technologies, and the like by defunding the Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy and simlar programs put America first? Or defunding the Weatherization Assistance Program to help low-income people pay less in energy bills?
How does cutting 18% from the National Institutes of Health, hundreds of millions of dollars from nurse training programs, and billions in grants to low-income families put America first?
How does defunding the Community Development Block Grant and the HOME Investment Partnerships Program (and related programs), both of which help struggling communities and low-income people find housing.
How does eliminating or radically curtailing programs that project “soft power” in favor of military force put America first? Programs like the Global Climate Change Initiative, or changing military grants into loans that have to be repaid, reducing our funding of the World Bank, and unspecified “rightsizing” of foreign aid in general.
How does eliminating all Amtrak funding except for the Northeast Corridor put America first? How about the Essential Air Service, which helps rural communities connect to the rest of the country by air?
Given that climate change is actually happening and primarily our fault, and not a hoax like too many Republicans believe, how does defunding the Clean Power Plan put America first? How about cutting the Superfund site cleanup budget by about 30%? Or cutting the EPA’s Office of Research and Development, which is responsible for ensuring that the EPA’s regulations are based solidly in science, by nearly 50%? Or cutting by nearly 50% EPA grants to the states for the states to do their own environmental enforcement and regulations? And what about eliminating regional programs to clean up and protect areas like the Chesapeake Bay (which is finally clean enough that it can be fished safely again) and the Great Lakes, cutting the Energy Star program, and defunding aid to Alaskan native villages – how do those put America first?
This budget isn’t an “America first” budget. It cuts too deep everywhere but Homeland Security and the Department of Defense to be an America first budget. This budget is a “military first, border patrol second, and to hell with everyone else” budget.
Now to see how much worse Congress can make it.