Reed upset with Trump’s budget proposal
U.S. Rep. Tom Reed said he is less than impressed with the president’s budget proposal.
Reed, R-Corning, said he is “deeply disappointed” in the budget, and couples that disappointment with the budget gaps bill that he recently did not support.
On Monday, President Donald Trump proposed a $4.4 trillion federal budget for the 2019 fiscal year. The plan included a 27 percent cut to the state department, a 25 percent cut from the Environmental Protection Agency as well as changes to Medicare. The proposal also included an $80 million increase in defense spending.
“It is very difficult for me to support that kind of unrestrained spending,” Reed said. “If we’re going to tackle the debt crisis, we need to get the spending under control.”
Reed said he does support the military and understands it needs an increase, but the figures didn’t add up in a “responsible manner.” He said the budget deal was done on the spending side and was “driven by the Senate.”
“It’s amazing how you can cut a deal when you’re spending other people’s money,” he said.
Reed said he originally ran for office in 2010 due to the debt crisis and remains committed to address it. With the growth that has come from tax reform, Reed said the government should take the time to “put our fiscal house in order.”
The president’s budget also shows a large cut in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and would include packages of food as part of the benefits. During a presentation of the budget by Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney on Monday, Mulvaney said the program would be a “Blue Apron-type” program that would allow lower costs because food would be purchased at wholesale prices.
Reed said he was open to different approaches to SNAP.
“That’s a sign of being innovative and creative,” he said. “I’m open to innovative, new ways of looking at issues.”
Reed said it could be a good change to the program that would help with the “blackmarket” trade that is seen with EBT cards. With a food box delivered to someone’s door, people who need food would get food, he said.
“We can do better than the traditional Food Stamp program,” he said.