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OUR VIEW: Presidential budget is just bad news for most vulnerable Americans

artwork+by+Anna+Teichroeb
artwork by Anna Teichroeb

artwork by Anna Teichroeb

artwork by Anna Teichroeb

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Because the presidential cabinet is filled with extremely wealthy individuals, it should have been crystal clear what that would mean for the people of low or no incomes. Speaking simply, it’s just bad news.

With extreme welfare cuts, it’s become painfully obvious (if it wasn’t already) that President Trump and his cabinet have zero regard for those who don’t have money.

The latest budget proposal is proof of this, showing itself to be completely inhumane and catastrophic. The 2019 $4.4 trillion spending plan looks a bit similar to the 2018 one; however, this budget proposes hacking away at some more health assistance, foreign aid, housing programs, education grants, the environment and community redevelopment funds.

Also the International Space Station is just too costly, so they’ve proposed cutting off funding for it after 2024 where it can then be handed over to a private company. Privatizing the ISS? Really? If that sounds ludicrous.

They also plan to chop off $266 billion from Medicare, $213 billion from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps), plenty more billions from Medicaid, the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program, regional development agencies, and then replace the Affordable Care Act with the Graham-Cassidy bill, which is cadaverous in comparison. Because who really needs health insurance, vouchers for food when you’re broke, or improvement in society? With a $1.5 trillion infrastructure plan for that Mexico border wall, who cares? Where’s the humanity?

Even if it’s unlikely that a vast majority of these things will be passed, it’s still vile to think that there are actual people who would prefer it to be this way. Chopping away at safety nets for the American people shows how disinterested this administration and its agency leaders are in anyone’s well being except their own.

This budget would slow growth in Medicaid and cut funding for food stamps and the welfare cash-assistance program. It would also cut a grant program for child care assistance, and even end a program that helps low-income and elderly pay heating and power bills. Because who needs any of that? Those who aren’t  rich, that’s who.

Education also takes a hit in this proposal. The deepest cut is $3.6 billion off of discretionary spending by the Education Department. This would affect the recruitment and retaining of teachers and support principals (because who needs educators in our schools?) and the 21st Century Learning Centers grants (after-school programs), particularly in high-poverty communities.

Many other hits are proposed throughout the GOP 2019 budget. To sum it up, it’s not good. It’s unlikely to have most of it actually take effect after going through Congress. It is however very scary to imagine it in its full strength and what that could mean for so many of us.

Voting is the best solution. Get the out-of-touch rich out of office and replace them with representatives who care about the majority of America and not their own interests. Early voting is going on now for the March 6 elections and primaries. Your vote makes a difference, so use it.

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