Bustos Statement on President’s Budget Proposal

WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (IL-17), a member of the powerful House Appropriations Committee, released the following statement after the Trump Administration released its budget for Fiscal Year 2020:

“In the Heartland, we pride ourselves on living within our means, rewarding the dignity of hard work and lending a helping hand to our neighbors in need. The president’s budget proposal abandons those values and breaks his promises to the American people.

“As House Democrats work to restore fiscal responsibility in Washington, President Trump is proposing a budget that will add nearly $4.5 trillion of new debt in the next four years alone. In addition to running up our nation’s credit card, the president is paying for it by undermining the health and wellbeing of seniors and families – making major cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and once again attempting to repeal the Affordable Care Act. And even while farmers weather the president’s reckless trade war and a tough farm economy, this budget proposal cuts billions of dollars from crop insurance and the farm safety net.

“As the White House continues to sow chaos and throw partisan bombs, I’ll work with both parties on reasonable solutions for the people – cracking down on corruption, bringing down the cost of health care and rebuilding America through investments in our infrastructure.”

BACKGROUND

CUTS TO HEALTH CARE

  • Cuts funding for the Department of Health and Human Services by 12 percent, putting health care in jeopardy for seniors and hardworking families.
  • Slashes funding for medical research, cutting the budget at the National Institutes of Health by $4.5 billion in 2020.
  • Lays the groundwork to repeal the Affordable Care Act and cut Medicaid – ending Medicaid expansion and pushing out needy families by allowing states to restrict eligibility and increase co-pays.

CUTS TO RETIREMENT PROGRAMS

  • Cuts Medicare by $845 billion during the next ten years by reducing payments to hospitals and instituting new changes that might make it harder for patients to get the care they need.
  • Slashes Social Security by $25 billion during the next 10 years, including cuts to disability insurance.

CUTS TO OUR AGING INFRASTRUCTURE

  • Cuts funding for the Department of Transportation by 22 percent – which oversees our nation’s roads, transit, rail and bridges.
  • Slashes the budget for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) by 31 percent. The Corps is responsible for building and maintaining our nation’s water infrastructure like the locks and dams along the Mississippi River that help get goods to market.
  • Dramatically reduces funding for the Essential Air Service (EAS), which supports small towns and rural areas by ensuring they have continued commercial service.

CUTS TO RURAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND AGRICULTURE PROGRAMS

  • Cuts funding for the Department of Agriculture by 15 percent, undermining support for family farmers and our agricultural economy.
  • Slashes the federal crop insurance program – the centerpiece of the farm safety net – with $26 billion in cuts, including limiting the average premium subsidy for crop insurance from 62 percent to 48 percent.
  • Cuts $9 billion from extremely popular volunteer conservation programs that revitalize soil, filter water, provide habitat for endangered species and offer recreational opportunities for hunters.
  • Eliminates $5 billion in funding to Section 32 programs that help purchase commodities in time of need. Meanwhile, soybean prices are 18% lower than they were 1 year ago due to the president’s unnecessary trade war, and many grain elevators have no more room for storage.

CUTS TO EDUCATION

  • Cuts the Department of Education budget by 12%, largely at the expense of assistance for low- and middle-income students.
  • Eliminates subsidized student loans, which will make college less affordable for middle-class students and those with financial need.
  • Eliminates the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, which forgives the federal student loans of individuals who spend ten years working in public service. This is yet another attack on the PSLF program from this White House, which only awarded loan forgiveness to 96 out of 29,000 applications in 2018.
  • Proposes deep cuts to important federal loan and grant programs that help make college affordable to students, including cutting funding for Federal Work Study by $510 million compared to FY19 levels and reducing funding for Federal TRIO programs that target first generation, low-income students.

CUTS TO SOCIAL SERVICES

  • Cuts the Department of Housing and Urban Development by 16%, slashing federal investments in affordable housing and raising rents for some of country’s most needy families.
  • Eliminates the Community Development Block Grant, one of the largest community and economic development programs in the country, as well as the Social Service Block Grant, a source of funding for states to provide child protective services and day care.
  • Further undermines the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) with $17 billion in cuts, which affects 1 in 7 Illinoisans – or 1.9 million Illinoisans in total. More than 63 percent of SNAP participants in Illinois are in families with children.

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