Udall Statement on Trump Budget

by Reporter / Mar 12, 2019 / 0 comments

Udall Statement on Trump Budget 

Trump’s proposed budget cuts education, health care and water funding, while requesting billions more for border wall

WASHINGTON —On Thursday, U.S. Senator Tom Udall, lead Democrat on the Senate Interior and Environment Appropriations Subcommittee and the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, released the following statement on President Trump's budget blueprint: 

“The president’s budget is a clear reflection of his administration’s backwards and dangerous priorities, which would be devastating to New Mexico’s economy and to working families in our state and across the country. To finance tax cuts lining the pockets of the wealthiest few, the Trump administration wants to cut funding for education, Medicaid, Medicare, renewable energy, water projects, and roll back environmental programs that keep our air and water clean and safe. 

“After shuttering the government for 35 days didn’t work, the president is now proposing devastating cuts to essential programs that every New Mexico community relies on – to pay for the president’s ineffective, wasteful, and divisive border wall. The deep proposed cuts to Medicaid, SNAP food assistance, housing assistance, and Social Security disability, and cutting billions from Medicare, would risk the health and security of families all across our state. 

“Instead of investing in programs that will help fight climate change and address the growing threat of natural disasters, the president is proposing massive cuts to science and clean energy research and development. And slashing the Environmental Protection Agency's budget would cripple the agency’s already hampered ability to safeguard public health, opening the door to polluters who already face little accountability for their dangerous practices. This budget proposal also defies the recent bipartisan public lands bill and would eliminate funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund and cut other important public land and water programs at the Department of Interior.

“In a move that should be opposed by Western states on a bipartisan basis, this budget breaks the promise of the recent bipartisan fire borrowing budget fix by failing to reinvest any of the hundreds of millions in discretionary savings into forest restoration, fire prevention and other conservation programs— and instead proposes cutting the current level of funding for state and local fire protection.

“As the top Democrat on the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, I am also gravely concerned that this budget continues this administration’s pattern of disregarding our trust and treaty obligations to Tribes -- while funding the Interior Department’s misguided, sweeping reorganization proposal despite objections from Tribes.

“While the defense budget would see a large proposed increase, it is only provided by proposing to abuse a budget process for overseas contingencies on an unprecedented scale.  Overseas defense funds were historically intended for the ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan which are supposed to be coming to a close.  Actual defense programs, including those at New Mexico’s national labs and military facilities, need ongoing budget certainty that this funding gimmick cannot provide.

“Last but not least of these backward priorities, this budget request seeks over $8 billion in new funding for President Trump’s offensive, ineffective, and wasteful border wall.  Fortunately, Congress holds the power of the purse, and we must reject this budget outright.  There is no defense for a budget that targets working families – but that shouldn’t mean the president and his administration get a pass on proposing these devasting cuts and disregarding the long-term impact they would have on our communities. As a senior member of the Appropriations Committee and vice chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, I will work tirelessly to provide a strong bipartisan budget that invests in New Mexico and moves the country forward.”

 

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