Trump budget, $4.75 trillion proposed 2020 budget

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Trump budget, $4.75 trillion proposed 2020 budget.

President Donald Trump called for deep cuts in environmental and safety net programs, billions more for his border wall and a huge boost for the military in a $4.75 trillion proposed 2020 budget that is unlikely to gain any traction in Congress.

Trump delivered his first budget under a divided government Monday, a road map that would not balance the books for 15 years despite deep reductions. The proposal also called for $8.6 billion for Trump’s border wall, a request Democrats flatly rejected.

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“Congress has been ignoring the president’s spending reductions for the last two years,” Trump’s top budget aide, Russell Vought, told reporters when pressed for an explanation about why the budget anticipates a $1.1 trillion deficit next year.

Even before Democrats claimed control of the House, similar proposals by Trump failed in Congress. The schism between the president’s wish list and actual government spending only deepened after a dispute over the border wall led to a 35-day partial government shutdown that ended in January.

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“This is not a serious proposal,” said Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., the top Democrat on the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Presidential budgets, required by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921, for decades have had more to do with politics than policy. With the 2020 election underway, the document gives Trump an opportunity to lay out a vision he can trumpet to supporters.

The White House is are eager to sell three messages with the president’s third budget: that Trump hasn’t given up on building his long-promised border wall, that he wants to increase military spending and that he hopes to slash just about everything else.

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The president requested $8.6 billion more for his wall, just weeks after Congress failed to approve his demand for $5.7 billion. With both sides dug in on the issue, the latest proposal is certain to go nowhere. Trump declared a national emergency in February, a move the White House says will free up billions more for the wall.

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