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Reviewing Trump's $.4 trillion budget

February 21, 2018
Pine Island Eagle

To the editor:

Trump's $4.4 trillion budget has been revealed. It's time for all Americans to take stock of presidential priorities. Of special note:

1. Despite campaign promises, massive cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are proposed, exceeding $554 billion. A "work requirement" for Medicare proposal will not likely generate much savings as nearly 80 percent of Medicaid recipients are elderly, children or disabled. Sixty-four percent of our seniors in nursing homes receive Medicaid; their care may be at risk.

2. Funding for food stamps and cash assistance programs is being slashed. Since Medicaid recipients often are food stamp recipients as well, this further reduces our poor by not only risking their health, but also adding to their hunger.

3. While we're attacking the elderly, funding for programs that supply Meals On Wheels, and heating and power bill assistance are being axed. Unhealthy, hungry, cold and in the dark ... is this how a nation cares for their elderly?

4. States lose, too. Forty-five percent cuts to state programs that inspect toxic sites and monitor poisons are in the budget. Further cuts are proposed to state grants that do everything from supply rural water infrastructure to teacher training. It limits federal Medicaid payments to well below current limits.

5. The budget will only fund 20 percent of infrastructure rebuilding as opposed to the traditional federal 80 percent, placing the burden on the states that just lost a lot of federal money already. Privatizing infrastructure repair (think selling it then paying tolls to new owners to use it) is proposed.

6. Defense spending balloons; curiously, the military is budgeted to receive 47 aircraft it didn't even request, for a nearly $8 billion additional price tag ($686 billion total military).

7. The federal deficit is expected to explode by $7 trillion, completely eradicating the myth of Republican fiscal responsibility.

Bottom line is, we can't afford to care for our elderly, we can't feed our poor, definitely no mention of housing our homeless, we can't repair our roads or ports or dams, we can't support our trains, we can't raise the minimum wage for the 9th year in a row, we absolutely can't offer healthcare to citizens whose taxes pay for this nation ... but there is plenty for billionaire and corporate tax cuts, an outdated wall and a Grand Parade.

Susan McGuire, on behalf of Pine Island ROAR,

a grassroots progressive advocacy organization,




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