Tuesday, March 29, 2016

House Republican Budget Gets 62 Percent of Budget Cuts From Low- and Moderate-Income Programs


March 28, 2016
by Richard Kogan and Isaac Shapiro


Specifically, the plan, which the House Budget Committee approved on March 16, would cut programs for low- and moderate-income people by about $3.7 trillion over the next decade. In 2026, it would cut such programs overall by 42 percent — causing tens of millions of people to lose health coverage and millions to lose basic food or other support.

In addition, the plan would secure 62 percent of its budget cuts from low-income programs even though they account for just 28 percent of total non-defense program spending (and just 24 percent of total program spending, including defense).

While cutting supports and services severely for Americans of lesser means, the budget would secure no deficit reduction at all from the more than $1 trillion a year in tax credits, deductions, and other preferences, collectively known as “tax expenditures” — which disproportionately benefit high-income households and which former Reagan Administration economics adviser (and Harvard professor) Martin Feldstein has called the most wasteful part of the budget.


The low-income cuts include:

• Some $2.9 trillion in health care cuts for low- and moderate-income people. •••

• More than $150 billion in cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps). •••

• Almost $500 billion in cuts in other entitlements for low-income Americans, including deep cuts in higher education aid. •••

• About $100 billion in cuts to low-income non-defense discretionary programs. •••


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