On Thursday, the House of Representatives passed a new budget agreement that would explode federal spending by an additional $320 billion over two years in a bipartisan vote. Most disappointingly, the budget deal really amounts to the final nail in the coffin repealing “sequestration” — the hard fought (yet entirely non-draconian) spending restraint won by the the Tea Party during the Obama-era — by kicking the spending caps all the way out to 2028 and 2029 where, the safe money says, they will be ignored again. The deal was reportedly brokered by Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
On July 5th, ten of the current twenty major Democratic presidential candidates gathered in Houston for the 2019 annual convention of the National Education Association (NEA) to discuss their education platforms before members of the nation’s largest teachers’ union. Present at this forum were: former Vice President Joe Biden, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro, California Senator Kamala Harris, Washington Governor Jay Inslee, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke, Ohio Congressman Tim Ryan, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. The answers to the questions and
As discussed for the last two budget cycles (here and here) President Trump is working to keep his 2016 campaign promise to cut the size and scope of the U.S. Department of Education (USED). Here is some of the good, bad and ugly of the Fiscal Year 2020 budget: The Good News The 2020 budget seeks to cut overall USED spending by $7.1 billion or ten percent. That is consistent with his previous budgets and a good start on what is a big job. Basically level funding is maintained for both Title I, the main federal education program for poor
Tonight, President Trump will deliver an address from the Oval Office on immigration and the ongoing government shutdown. Trump’s speech will be followed by remarks from Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Judging from the format alone, it seems unlikely that either side is prepared to make much in the way of concessions. But why? From my perspective, breaking the immigration impasse seems like commonsense. Regardless of whether Washington is suffering from a lack thereof, or both sides only wish to deprive the other team of even a partial victory, based on the actions of negotiators
As a potential government shutdown looms on the horizon, one of the most highly discussed budget issues is whether or not Planned Parenthood should continue to receive taxpayer funding. If a new funding deal is not passed soon, the federal government is scheduled to shut down on December 7th. While the passing of former President George H.W. Bush is prompting President Trump to consider a two-week extension to current funding, a government shutdown before Christmas is currently a very real possibility. Because the new funding deal is not set in stone, pro-life leaders and advocates are flooding Washington, D.C., in
The education swamp-expanding budget process discussed a few weeks ago is now near completion. The table below shows the final levels of difference between this fiscal year and last in the column in bold. Sadly, none of the unconstitutional, wasteful, ineffective programs were cut. The “best” outcome in some cases was that a couple of them were not increased. It is a sad state of affairs, but totally not surprising in an election year. The Senate voted 93-7 to pass the conference report, and the House will vote on it this week. The budget’s education spending is just one of
Although not surprising in an election year, congressional appropriators — who are generally not known for their political courage — are not doing anything to drain the putrid, unconstitutional swamp that is the U.S. Department of Education and its related programs. Both the full House and Senate Appropriations Committees have completed their Labor/HHS/Education appropriations bills for Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 that will begin October 1st. As we described a few months ago, the omnibus budget bill for FY 2018 exploded deficits and significantly enlarged the federal education footprint. Although there are some places where there are no new increases, the
Recently the House Freedom Caucus succeeded in torpedoing a vote on Congress’ latest farm bill. While some believe that passage of this legislation was necessary to help American agriculture, an eye-opening new book by John Tamny, Director of the Center for Economic Freedom at FreedomWorks, reveals how government spending programs not only harm taxpayers, but also make it harder for you to get your dream job. Tamny’s enlightening new book The End of Work: Why Your Passion Can Become Your Job, describes how the nature of work has changed immensely over the last century. Tamny writes, “A hundred and fifty