In The News

President Trump’s 2018 Budget Puts the ‘Safety and Security’ of America First

The White House Office of Management and Budget released President Donald Trump’s 2018 budget on Thursday in which the president’s spending recommendations favor national security and public safety over traditionally liberal priorities.

The proposal is executive guidance as congress is responsible for crafting the federal budget. As republicans control both houses, the budget will likely take most of the president’s recommendations.

In the opening statement to congress, the president summarizes his budget:

My Budget Blueprint for 2018:
• provides for one of the largest increases in defense spending without increasing the
• significantly increases the budget for immigration enforcement at the Department of
Justice and the Department of Homeland Security;
• includes additional resources for a wall on the southern border with Mexico, immigration
judges, expanded detention capacity, U.S. Attorneys, U.S. Immigration and
Customs Enforcement, and Border Patrol;
• increases funding to address violent crime and reduces opioid abuse; and
• puts America first by keeping more of America’s hard-earned tax dollars here at home.

The 2018 budget blueprint contains an additional $54 billion in defense spending offset by spending reductions to foreign aid.

“This includes deep cuts to foreign aid. It is time to prioritize the security and well-being of Americans, and to ask the rest of the world to step up and pay its fair share,” the president wrote.

The Budget blueprint also eliminates funding for a slew of independent agencies, including: the African Development Foundation; the Appalachian Regional Commission; the Chemical Safety Board; the Corporation for National and Community Service; the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; the Delta Regional Authority; the Denali Commission; the Institute of Museum and Library Services; the Inter-American Foundation; the U.S. Trade and Development Agency; the Legal Services Corporation; the National Endowment for the Arts; the National Endowment for the Humanities; the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation; the Northern Border Regional Commission; the Overseas Private Investment Corporation; the United States Institute of Peace; the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness; and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

Department by Department Breakdown of the President’s Proposed 2018 Budget

Department of Agriculture

The budget proposes $17.9 billion for USDA, a $4.7 billion or 21 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized continuing resolution (CR) level (excluding funding for P.L. 480 Title II food aid which is reflected in the Department of State and USAID budget).

Program Cuts:

  • Cuts funding for new federal land acquisition and focuses spending on maintaining current forests and grasslands
  • Reduces funding for USDA statistical capabilities
  • Eliminates $498 million for the duplicative Water and Wastewater loan and grant program
  • Reduces staffing in USDA’s Service Center Agencies to streamline county office operations
  • Eliminates $98 million in discretionary funding for the Rural Business and Cooperative Service
  • Eliminates the McGovern-Dole International Food for Education program due to lack of evidence that it works

Department of Commerce

The budget proposes $7.8 billion for the Department of Commerce, a $1.5 billion or 16 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program Enhancements

  • $1.5 billion, an increase of more than $100 million, for the U.S. Census Bureau to continue preparations for the 2020 Decennial Census

Program Cuts:

  • Eliminates Federal funding of $124 million for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program
  • Eliminates the Economic Development Administration, which provides small grants with limited measurable impacts and duplicates other Federal programs saving $221 million
  • Eliminates the dulicative Minority Business Development Agency
  • Eliminates over $250 million in targeted National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Department of Defense

The budget proposes $639 billion for DOD, a $52 billion increase from the 2017 annualized CR level. The total includes $574 billion for the base budget, a 10 percent increase from the 2017 annualized CR level, and $65 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations.

Department of Education

The budget provides $59 billion in discretionary funding for the Department of Education, a $9 billion or 13 percent reduction below the 2017 annualized CR level.

  • Increases investments in public and private school choice by $1.4 billion compared to the 2017 annualized CR level, ramping up to an annual total of $20 billion, and an estimated $100 billion including matching State and local funds
  • Eliminates the $2.4 billion Supporting Effective Instruction State Grants program due to poor performance
  • Eliminates the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program at a savings of $1.2 billion due to poor performance
  • Eliminates the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant program at a savings of $732 million – duplicative and not as effective as Pell Grant program
  • Eliminates or reduces over 20 categorical programs that do not address national needs, duplicate other programs, or are more appropriately supported with State, local, or private funds, including Striving Readers, Teacher Quality Partnership, Impact Aid Support Payments for Federal Property, and International Education programs

Department of Energy

The budget proposes $28.0 billion for DOE, a $1.7 billion or 5.6 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level. The Budget would strengthen the Nation’s nuclear capability by providing a $1.4 billion increase above the 2017 annualized CR level for the National Nuclear Security Administration, an 11 percent increase.

Program Enhancements:

  • Provides $120 million to restart licensing activities for the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository and initiate a robust interim storage program

Program Cuts:

  • Eliminates the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy, the Title 17 Innovative Technology Loan Guarantee Program, and the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program taking government out of picking winners and losers in new energy technologies
  • Reduce federal intervention in State-level energy policy and implementation – $2 billion in savings

Department of Health and Human Services

The budget propoeses $69.0 billion for HHS, a $15.1 billion or 17.9 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program Enhacements:

  • Additional $70 million for fraud, waste and abuse prevention program HFAC which has been very successful
  • $500 million increase for substance abuse efforts
  • Will require industries benefitting from FDA approval process to pay an additional $1 billion in FDA medical product user fees, reducing the burdon on the taxpayer
  • Reform the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention through $500 million block grant to increase State flexibility and focus on the leading public health challenges specific to each State

Program Cuts:

  • $5.8 billion cut to National Institutes of Health through consolidation of facilities, focusing of research funds and reductions in administrative costs
  • Eliminates $403 million in health professions and nursing training programs due to lack of evidence that they work
  • Eliminates the discretionary programs within the Office of Community Services, including the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG), a savings of $4.2 billion – lack of evidence of performance

Department of Homeland Security

The budget proposes  $44.1 billion in net discretionary budget authority for DHS, a $2.8 billion or 6.8 percent increase from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program enhancements:

  • $2.6 billion in high-priority tactical infrastructure and border security technology, including funding to plan, design, and construct a physical wall along the southern border
  • $314 million to recruit, hire, and train 500 new Border Patrol Agents and 1,000 new Immigration and Customs Enforcement law enforcement personnel in 2018
  • $1.5 billion increase for expanded detention, transportation, and removal of illegal immigrants
  • $15 million to begin implementation of mandatory nationwide use of the E-Verify Program
  • $1.5 billion for DHS activities that protect Federal networks and critical infrastructure from an attack
  • Raise the Passenger Security Fee to recover 75 percent of the cost of TSA aviation security operations

Program cuts:

  • Eliminates the discretionary appropriation for the NFIP’s Flood Hazard Mapping Program, a savings of $190 million
  • Eliminates  $667 million for programs administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that are either unauthorized by the Congress, such as FEMA’s Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant Program, or that must provide more measurable results
  • Eliminates and reduces $80 million inunauthorized and underperforming programs administered by TSA

Department of Housing and Urban Devlopment

The budget proposes $40.7 billion in gross discretionary funding for HUD, a $6.2 billion or 13.2 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program Enhancements:

  • Increase of $20 million over the 2017 annualized CR level, for the mitigation of lead-based paint and other hazards in low-income homes

Program Cuts:

  • Eliminates $3 billion in funding for the Community Development Block Grant program
  • Eliminates $1.1 billion in funding for a number of lower priority programs, including the HOME Investment Partnerships Program, Choice Neighborhoods, and the Self-help Homeownership Opportunity Program
  • Eliminates $35 million in funding for Section 4 Capacity Building for Community Development and Affordable Housing as it is a duplicative program

Department of the Interior

The budget proposes  $11.6 billion for DOI, a $1.5 billion or 12 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program Enhancements:

  • $900 million for DOI’s U.S. Geological Survey to focus investments in essential science programs
  • $1 billion for safe, reliable, and efficient management of water resources throughout the western United States

Program Cuts:

  • Reduces land acquisition funding by more than $120 million

Department of Justice

The budget proposes $27.7 billion for the Department of Justice, a $1.1 billion or 3.8 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program Enhancements:

  • Additional $249 million, or 3 percent, above the 2017 annualized CR level for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for  counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and Federal law enforcement activities
  • $175 million increase above the 2017 annualized CR level to target the worst of the worst criminal organizations and drug traffickers
  • $80 million to hire 75 additional immigration judge teams
  • 60 additional border enforcement prosecutors and 40 deputy U.S. Marshals for the apprehension, transportation, and prosecution of criminal aliens
  • 20 additional attorneys to pursue Federal efforts to obtain the land and holdings necessary to secure the Southwest border and another 20 attorneys and support staff for immigration litigation assistance
  • $171 million above the 2017 annualized CR level for additional short-term detention space to hold Federal detainees, including criminal aliens, parole violators, and other offenders awaiting trial or sentencing

Program Cuts:

  • Eliminates approximately $700 million in unnecessary spending on outdated programs that either have met their goal or have exceeded their usefulness, including $210 million for the poorly targeted State Criminal Alien Assistance Program

Department of Labor

The budget proposes  $9.6 billion for the Department of Labor, a $2.5 billion or 21 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program Cuts:

  • Saves$434 million by eliminating the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) for poor performance
  • Eliminates the Bureau of International Labor Affairs largely noncompetitive and unproven grant funding, which would save at least $60 million
  • Eliminates the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s unproven training grants, yielding savings of almost $11 million and refocusing OSHA on safety

Department of State

The budget requests $25.6 billion in base funding for the Department of State and USAID, a $10.1 billion or 28 percent reduction from the 2017 annualized CR level. The Budget also requests $12.0 billion as Overseas Contingency Operations funding for extraordinary costs, primarily in war areas like Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan, for an agency total of $37.6 billion. The 2018 Budget also requests $1.5 billion for Treasury International Programs, an $803 million or 35 percent reduction from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program Enhancements:

  • $2.2 billion toward new embassy construction and maintenance to provide secure facilities for embassy staff
  • $3.1 billion to meet the security assistance commitment to Israel

Program Cuts:

  • Eliminates the Global Climate Change Initiative and fulfills the President’s pledge to cease payments to the United Nations’ (UN) climate change programs
  • Shifts some foreign military assistance from grants to loans in order to reduce costs for the U.S. taxpayer
  • Reduces funding to the UN and affiliated agencies
  • Refocuses economic and development assistance to countries of greatest strategic importance to the U.S.
  • Reduces funding for multilateral development banks, including the World Bank, by approximately $650 million over three years

Department of Transportation

The budget requests $16.2 billion for DOT’s discretionary budget, a $2.4 billion or 13 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level.


Program Cuts:

  • Initiates a multi-year reauthorization proposal to shift the air traffic control function of the Federal Aviation Administration to an independent, non-governmental organization
  • Terminates federal support for Amtrak’s long distance train services allowing Amtrak to focus on the state-supported northeast corridor operations
  • Eliminates $175 million from funding for the Essential Air Service (EAS) program as EAS flights are not full and have high subsidy costs per passenger
  • Eliminates funding for the unauthorized TIGER discretionary grant program, which awards grants to projects that are generally eligible for funding under existing surface transportation formula programs for a $499 million savings

Department of the Treasury

The budget requests $12.1 billion in discretionary resources for the Department of the Treasury’s domestic programs, a $519 million or 4.1 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program Cuts:

  • Reduction of $239 million for the IRS from the 2017 annualized CR level
  • Eliminates funding for Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund grant at a $210 million saving
  • Shrinks the Federal workforce and increases its efficiency by redirecting resources away from duplicative policy offices to staff that manage the Nation’s finances

Department of Veterans Affairs

The President’s 2018 Budget requests $78.9 billion in discretionary funding for VA, a $4.4 billion or 6 percent increase from the 2017 enacted level.

Program enhancements:

  • $4.6 billion increase in discretionary funding for VA health care to improve patient access and timeliness of medical care services
  • Extends and funds the Veterans Choice Program to ensure that every eligible veteran continues to have the choice to seek care at VA or through a private provider
  • Provides resources to reduce the time required to process and adjudicate veterans’ disability compensation claims
  • Invests in information technology to improve the efficiency and efficacy of VA services

Environmental Protection Agency

The budget requests $5.7 billion for the Environmental Protection Agency, a savings of $2.6 billion, or 31 percent, from the 2017 annualized CR level.

Program enhancements:

  • $2.3 billion for the State Revolving Funds, a $4 million increase over the 2017 annualized CR level  – water protection
  • $20 million for the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act program, equal to the funding provided in the 2017 annualized CR. This credit subsidy could potentially support $1 billion in direct Federal loans

Program Cuts:

  • Discontinues funding for the Clean Power Plan saving $100 million
  • Reins in Superfund administrative costs and emphasizes efficiency $330 million in savings
  • Saves $129 million by concentrating EPA’s enforcement of environmental protection violations on programs that are not delegated to States
  • Reduce funding for EPA’s Office of Research and Development (ORD) by $233 million
  • Eliminates or substantially reduces Federal investment in State environmental activities that go beyond EPA’s statutory requirements for $482 million in savings
  • Returns the responsibility for funding local environmental efforts and programs to State and local entities, allowing EPA to focus on its highest national priorities for $427 million in savings
  • Eliminates more than 50 EPA programs, saving an additional $347 million (ex. Energy Star; Targeted Airshed Grants; the Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program; and infrastructure assistance to Alaska Native Villages and the Mexico Border)

National Aeronautics and Space Administration

The budget requests $19.1 billion for NASA, a 0.8 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR level, with targeted increases consistent with the President’s priorities. This budget supports and expands public-private partnerships as the foundation of future U.S. civilian space efforts

Program enhancements:

  • $624 million for aeronautics research and development for overland commercial supersonic flight and safer, more efficient commercial air travel
  • $1.9 billion for robotic exploration of the Solar System
  • $3.7 billion for continued development of the Orion crew vehicle, Space Launch System, and associated ground system, to send American astronauts on deep-space missions

Program cuts:

  • Terminates four Earth science missions (PACE, OCO-3, DSCOVR 44 National Aeronautics and Space Administration Earth-viewing instruments, and CLARREO Pathfinder) at a savings of $110 million
  • Eliminates the $115 million Office of Education, resulting in a more focused education effort through NASA’s Science Mission Directorate

Small Business Administration

The budget requests $826.5 million for SBA, a $43.2 million or 5.0 percent decrease from the 2017 annualized CR levelThe proposal supports $45 billion in loan guarantees to assist America’s small business owners.

Program Cuts:

  • $12 million in cost savings from the 2017 annualized CR level through identifying and eliminating those SBA grant programs where the private sector provides effective mechanisms (ex. PRIME technical assistance grants, Regional Innovation Clusters, and Growth Accelerators)


The president’s budget is focused on fully funding a $54 billion defense spending increase through offset cuts in discretionary spending.

Major budget changes from existing law

Support Conservative Daily News with a small donation via Paypal or credit card that will go towards supporting the news and commentary you've come to appreciate.

Rich Mitchell

Rich Mitchell is the editor-in-chief of Conservative Daily News and the president of Bald Eagle Media, LLC. His posts may contain opinions that are his own and are not necessarily shared by Bald Eagle Media, CDN, staff or .. much of anyone else. Find him on twitter, facebook and

Related Articles

Back to top button