Leahy Statement On Proposed FY 2017 Cuts

[BACKGROUND: Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt. ) Tuesday issued the following statement after reports surfaced of a document from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) had been released detailing cuts proposed by the Trump Administration for FY 2017.  This document was not shared directly to Leahy’s office or the offices of other Democratic members of the Appropriations Committee by OMB.]

Unfortunately, this appears to be more of the same partisan campaign gestures from the Trump Administration, making shortsighted and draconian cuts on the backs of the middle class and the most vulnerable Americans.  Cutting cancer research, slashing affordable housing and programs to protect the environment, and making middle class taxpayers pay for a wall that Mexico was supposed to pay for?  I’ve already made some blunt statements about the idea of an enormously expensive and ineffective wall. These may be the Trump Administration priorities, but they aren’t the priorities of the American people. 

Under the Constitution, it is Congress, not the White House, which holds the purse strings.  I am hopeful that, this document notwithstanding, we will continue our negotiations in good faith to fund the entire government, consistent with the bipartisan budget agreement, and keep partisan politics and poison pill riders out of the appropriations process. 

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