Demos' Response to President Trump’s “Starvation” Budget

Release Date: 
May 23, 2017

Tuesday, May 23 (NEW YORK, NY) – Tamara Draut, Vice President of Research and Policy at Demos, a New York-based public policy organization and think tank, issued this statement following the unveiling of President Trump’s full budget to Congress:

“The deeply alarming budget released by the Trump administration today would wreak havoc on working- and middle-class people, including many of the very people who sent him to the White House, by cutting services and programs that support our most vulnerable communities.

“Trump’s budget decimates vital programs, including Medicaid, food stamp assistance, and even Meals-on-Wheels and school meal programs for children, which are so critical for lifting people out of poverty. Without the lifeline provided by these programs, people across the country will suffer. And, by proposing large cuts to the number of federal employees and in their pensions, the Trump budget will break long-standing commitments not only to the employees, but to all of us who benefit from the services they provide. Meanwhile, he is accelerating our workforce’s race to the bottom, by divesting from democratic institutions, such as public education, and turning them over to profit-driven privateers.

“Further, there is little in Trump’s budget that provides greater access to college or makes it more affordable, and it does nothing to solve the root problems of underinvestment in public colleges and need-based grant aid. From cuts to technical education, on-campus childcare, and work study, to the elimination of Public Service Loan Forgiveness and civil rights enforcement, to the raiding of the Pell Grant surplus, this administration has signaled that it does not care about making higher education a possibility for more people, or reducing the burden of loan debt on working- and middle-class people.

“At the same time that the budget traps working and poor people in debt and eliminates their pathways to the middle class, the budget includes massive giveaways to Trump’s Wall Street billionaire friends, who stand to make millions.

“Ultimately the only thing this budget succeeds in doing is creating greater income inequality, taking away economic opportunity for millions and forcing more Americans into poverty. Budgets reflect the values of the people who craft them. This budget highly values the power of the wealthy and dramatically undervalues the working people who make our nation work. So, Congress must reject this budget and stand up for working- and middle-class Americans.”

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