Isakson Signals Support for Trump’s Budget

On Monday, President Trump released his fiscal year 2020 budget proposal. The White House is proposing a $4.7 trillion budget that includes $8.6 billion for border funding and increased defense spending. The budget proposal suggests cutting discretionary spending overall and making significant cuts to the Education Department, the Environmental Protection Agency, and international aid. The budget also calls for substantial reductions in mandatory spending programs, including curbing the growth of Medicare and Medicaid.

Senator Johnny Isakson (R-Ga) is a key player in the budget process and supports aspects of President Trump’s budget, highlighting the increase in defense spending. “In his fiscal year 2020 budget proposal, I appreciate President Trump’s continued commitment to ensuring that our military and national security needs are met as we confront enduring threats by terrorist organizations against our homeland and rising tensions by strategic competitors,” Isakson said, later calling the president’s budget a “meaningful guideline.” As a member of the Senate Finance Committee, Sen. Isakson helps oversee more than 50 percent of the federal budget.

Defense spending is a significant benefit for Georgia and especially communities outside of Metro Atlanta. Georgia is home to major military bases that benefit the local economies of cities like Brunswick, Augusta, Valdosta, Columbus, Warner Robins, and Hinesville. Under President Trump’s budget proposal, U.S. troops based in Georgia would receive a 3.1 percent pay raise, the largest in a decade.

While it is Congress that ultimately writes spending bills, the president influences the process by sharing the executive branch’s spending priorities. But with Democrats now in control of the House and spending bills in the Senate needing bipartisan support, the 2020 budget proposal will be given diminished consideration by the legislative branch. Despite the low influence on Congress, the president’s budget can be a campaign tool in 2020 to contrast Republican’s spending priorities with the Democrat’s opposition. Thus, the president’s budget can have a significant long-term impact in deciding spending priorities, if the electorate favors Republican’s fiscal mindset.

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