With an increase in military spending of 10 percent and trillions of dollars in cuts to anti-poverty programs, including Medicaid and nutritional assistance, it doesn’t take much digging to see how this proposal is preposterous.
His Own Supporters Will Suffer
Supporters of Trump voted for him because of his promises to make their lives better and to stop “moochers” from leeching off of the government. This is something he is trying to keep his word on by slashing funding to SNAP (Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program) by $191 billion over the next ten years and reducing payments for Medicaid.
The irony is, though, that many of his own voters are the ones who benefit from these programs and will be hit the hardest by these cuts.
Although many conservatives would want to deny it, the majority of people relying on food stamps and living in poverty are white. (As we now know, poor white folks voted for Trump bigly.)
White House budget director Mick Mulvaney also made the typical GOP assumption that people on assistance aren’t working by saying, “If you’re on food stamps and you’re able-bodied, then we need you to go to work.”
The fact of the matter is the majority of folks using these benefits are full-time workers.
These statistics debunk the myth that most people utilizing government benefits are lazy, black, and/or undocumented immigrants. (Undocumented immigrants do not qualify for food stamps.) They also make Trump’s cuts to these programs unnecessary and also incredibly dangerous. Nearly 45 percent of food stamp recipients are children under the age of 18, so approximately 20 million of this country’s youth could be left to go to bed hungry.
Also, much of Trump’s support is found in rural areas in places like Kentucky, the state with the highest percentage of people using food stamps. These rural areas already lack access to health care facilities, and Trump intends to cut them off even more from that by proposing to completely defund Planned Parenthood and other organizations that happen to provide abortion services.
The Hyde Amendment already makes it impossible for organizations like Planned Parenthood to use any government funds for their abortion services. So the only thing Trump’s proposal will do is hurt people and possibly kill them. By defunding these programs, this means Americans (many who voted for him) will suffer from lack of access to things these organizations provide like STD treatment, cancer screenings, and even Zika prevention.
We Already Outspend Everyone on Defense
According to Trump, cutting funding to programs like SNAP, Medicaid, and public health services is imperative in order to increase funding for military spending and border security. But is our military even in dire need of more cash?
In 2015, world military spending totaled more than $1.6 trillion. And guess what? The United States accounted for more than 37 percent of that total. Our expenditures equal those of the next seven largest military budgets around the world…combined.
Yet Trump insists we are in need of even more investment in our military. His proposal adds $54 billion more to the Department of Defense and $2.6 billion for border security.
The Budget Benefits the Already Rich
As mentioned earlier, the way Trump plans to increase this spending for our military is by cutting off people in poverty from their lifelines. This is disgusting enough as it is, but it makes it even worse by the fact that he also proposes making life easier for a group of people who don’t need the help.
The tax cuts attached to the proposal “could add as much as $2 trillion to the debt over the next 10 years, while distributing nearly all the benefits to the highest income households,” according to estimates by the Tax Policy Center.
Trump’s idea is to cut taxes on pass through businesses to 15 percent, but the TPC found that “low- and middle-income households would receive only a small fraction of the benefits of tax cut on pass-throughs.”
So who does get the bulk of the benefits?
You guessed it—the 1 percent.
But I thought Trump was for the working class??
Everything about the Apprentice-in-Chief’s latest proposal reflects anything but a man looking out for the average American. It is now up to Congress to turn this budget around and make it work, like models stomping on the runway wearing Ivanka’s clothing line made in a Chinese factory for $1 an hour.