Issue Report ● Congress
For Immediate Release: 
March 20, 2017
Contact Info: 

Mariel Saez 202-225-3130

Last week, President Trump released a budget blueprint for fiscal year 2018 that represents a radical disinvestment in America. This proposal is facing wide opposition, including from members of his own party:

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY): “The diplomatic portion of the federal budget is very important and you get results a lot cheaper frequently than you do on the defense side…So speaking for myself, I’m not in favor of reducing the [foreign aid] account to that extent.” [Salon 3/16/17]

Senator John McCain (R-AZ): “It is clear that this budget proposed today cannot pass the Senate.” [Fox News 3/16/17]

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC): “…dead on arrival… What’s most disturbing about the cut to the State Department’s budget is it shows a lack of understanding of what it takes to win the war…If you take soft power off the table then you’re never going to win the war.” [Salon, 3/16/17]

Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL): “I do not support the proposed 28 percent cut to our international affairs budget and diplomatic efforts led by the State Department...” [Statement, 3/16/17]

Rep.  Hal Rogers (R-KY): “I am disappointed that many of the reductions and eliminations proposed in the President’s skinny budget are draconian, careless and counterproductive.” [Statement, 3/16/17]

Rep. Ed Royce, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee (R-CA): “I am very concerned by reports of deep cuts that could damage efforts to combat terrorism, save lives, and create opportunities for American workers.” [AP, 3/16/17]

Rep. Mike Conaway, Chairman of House Committee on Agriculture (R-TX): “On the USDA budget, I am concerned that the cuts, while relatively small in the context of the total federal budget, could hamper some vital work of the department…” [Statement, 3/16/17]

Why has this proposal faced broad opposition? Here is a look at who would be hurt most:


  • Disinvests from our public school system while increasing funding for private schools.
  • Cuts programs that help minorities access higher education.
  • Eliminates before and after school programs and other student enrichment programs that help students succeed.
  • Slashes funding that would ensure that students have access to great teachers and that those teachers have the tools that they need.

Small Businesses:

  • Cuts funding for loan guarantees currently available to small-business owners.
  • Eliminates the Minority Business Development Agency.
  • Eliminates tax credit programs that help revitalize low income communities.

Rural Communities:

  • Eliminates supports for business development and job opportunities in rural areas through the Rural Business-Cooperative Service.
  • Eliminates grants to low-income communities from the Economic Development Administration.
  • Removes all funds for infrastructure projects in the rural south through the Appalachian Regional Commission.
  • Ends federal funding for job creation programs in the Mississippi Delta region through the Delta Regional Authority.

Low-Income Families:

  • Slashes programs that make federal housing safer through energy efficient heating and cooling systems.
  • Stops funding a program fostering community development in urban housing developments.


  • Eliminates a program which helps low-income seniors find work.
  • Removes federal funding from programs providing food assistance to housebound seniors, such as Meals on Wheels.

President Trump’s budget blueprint includes cuts to programs that keep America safe, help find cures for diseases, and protect our environment:

Making America less safe:

  • Cuts the Department of State and USAID by 31%, the lowest level of funding for these agencies since 2002.
  • Reduces number of diplomats to advance US security interests in places like Iraq and Afghanistan.
  • Reduces funding for United Nations peacekeeping missions throughout the world.
  • Cuts distribution of food aid to 2 million people in developing countries.
  • Eliminates funding tools to end violent conflict which could threaten the US.
  • Eliminates funding for agricultural and economic development programs in poverty-stricken African nations through the African Development Foundation.
  • Eliminates funding that addresses the root causes of child migration from Central America through the Inter-American Foundation.

Hindering advances in medicine:

  • Cuts the Department of Health and Human Services by 18%.
  • Slashes $5.8 billion from NIH, which will delay patient access to lifesaving treatments.
  • Converts CDC funding to state block grants, hindering our ability to respond to public health crises swiftly and cohesively.
  • Cuts $400 million for health care workforce development, undermining access to care in communities across the country already dealing with a shortage of health professionals.
  • Eliminates the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, which has been central to the country’s success in reducing medical errors and improving overall health care quality.

Turning back the clock on our environment:

  • Imposes a $2.6 billion (31%) cut on the Environmental Protection Agency. 
  • Eliminates all funding for the Clean Power Plan to address carbon pollution from the power sector and EPA-funded research on climate change.
  • Reduces funding for the US Forest Service, which plays a vital role in rural economies supporting jobs in forest products or outdoor recreation.
  • Eliminates programs at the Department of Energy developing the next generation of clean energy and transportation technologies.
  • Cuts $1.5 billion (12%) out of the Department of the Interior’s budget, which manages vast amounts of public lands and waters.
  • Eliminates U.S. funding for international climate programs, including those which help developing countries adopt low-carbon technologies developed and manufactured right here in the United States.
  • Eliminates the entire education program and earth science budget supporting climate change at NASA 

Click here to read the PDF. 

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