The House Republican budget’s vast spending cuts are overwhelmingly aimed at low-income Americans, so much so that nearly two-thirds of its budget cuts would come from poverty programs that aid the neediest people in the nation, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI), the plan’s author, claims his budget will cut a total $4.6 trillion in spending by using a baseline that includes current policies like the automatic budget cuts known as sequestration, among other policies. By counting those cuts and other policies that are unlikely to remain in tact, CBPP estimates that the House Republican plan would cut even more — a total of $5 trillion. Of that, 66 percent of the cuts — a total of $3.3 trillion — would come from programs that help low-income Americans, CBPP found:
This version of the House GOP plan cuts even more from low-income programs than the 2012 version, which found 62 percent of its cuts from similar sources. That version was even more draconian than its predecessor, meaning Ryan’s budgets have gotten more devastating for the poor each year.
The social safety net keeps millions of Americans out of poverty each year, but the House GOP plan seeks to convert many of them, including food stamps, into block grants to states that follow the model of the 1996 welfare reform law that has failed to help children and families in poverty, particularly during and after the Great Recession. At the same time, Ryan’s plan provides $5.7 trillion in tax cuts aimed largely at the wealthy and corporations. Under his proposal, the average millionaire would see a tax cut of at least $200,000.