The White House budget proposal for fiscal year 2018, which deepens plans for social cuts and increases in defense and security, is designed “from the point of view” of “taxpayers Who pay and not those who receive, “the US government said on Wednesday.
“It’s the first plan that has been designed from the point of view of taxpayers who pay the budget, not the recipient,” said Mick Mulvaney, director of the White House Budget Office, at a conference call With journalists.
Mulvaney stressed that “we can not measure compassion for money or people who are in welfare programs, but for the number of people we get out of those programs.”
He also pointed out that the proposal progressively reduces the deficit “until it balances public accounts at the end of a decade” and expects a sustained annual growth of 3%, a result of “the dynamism and optimism” that used to be “normal” in the United States and Which is fueled by tax cuts and the withdrawal of excess federal regulation.
The plan, called “A New Foundation for US Greatness,” is President Donald Trump’s first comprehensive budget since coming to power last January.One of the main victims is the program known as Medicaid, which offers health coverage to low-income citizens, with cuts of 800 billion dollars in 10 years.
In addition, the White House reduces by more than 190 billion dollars the financing of the low-income family food program known as SNAP, which benefited 44 million people in 2016.
States are also given more competence to define the requirements of a minimum number of hours worked or the search for active employment of their beneficiaries. “States have a better perspective and are more flexible to see who and how they access those social programs,” Mulvaney said.
The official noted that Trump’s electoral pledges remain unfulfilled for Medicare programs, medical coverage for those over 65, and Social Security pensions, two of the most expensive for public accounts.
In addition, a maternity and paternity leave program designed by her daughter and counselor, Ivanka Trump, is proposed for the first time in the United States for a value of 25,000 million dollars over the next 10 years.
Finally, emphasis is placed on the guidelines outlined by Trump in its March draft, which included an impulse to defense spending of $ 54 billion, equivalent to 10%, and $ 1.6 billion for the construction of the wall on the Mexican border .
In addition, environmental protection and international aid programs would be greatly reduced.
The budget proposal, however, is more a statement of political priorities than an economic document, since it must be approved by Congress, where it is usually subjected to innumerable modifications.