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Posts by David Reich

Budget Relief Should Go Equally to Defense and Non-Defense

January 25, 2017

The House reportedly may soon consider a bill to fund the Defense Department for the rest of fiscal year 2017, and it may be because the Republican majority wants to give defense some relief from the sequestration budget cuts without doing the same for non-defense programs.

But defense is just one of 11 bills needed to fund the government in 2017 that remain unfinished, and Congress...

Magnifying Glass and Pie Chart

Five Key Points About Budget “Reconciliation”

November 15, 2016

Republican leaders indicate they’ll likely use a special legislative procedure called “reconciliation” to try to repeal the Affordable Care Act, and probably also to enact tax cuts and perhaps change other spending programs. 

quarter on graph

Proposal on “Unauthorized” Spending Would Do More Harm Than Good

September 6, 2016

House Republican Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Americans for Prosperity President Tim Phillips recently denounced Congress for “unauthorized spending.”  But, in their September 1 Washington Post...

money puzzle

McCain Defense Amendment Proposes to Breach Bipartisan Budget Deal

June 8, 2016

The Senate will shortly consider an amendment by Senator John McCain to the annual defense authorization bill that would authorize adding about $18 billion to defense funding, using the Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) account as his mechanism.  Doing so would exceed the defense level of last year’s Bipartisan Budget Act (BBA) and violate the “parity” principle that the President and...


House Appropriators’ Gimmick Would Boost Defense

May 17, 2016

The House Appropriations Committee is considering today a 2017 defense appropriations bill that would take a big step towards boosting defense spending above the limit in last year’s bipartisan budget agreement.

To do so, the bill shifts almost $16 billion to the core defense budget from overseas contingency operations (OCO) funds, creating an OCO hole that a supplemental appropriations...


House Bill Seeks Backdoor Effort to Boost Defense

April 27, 2016

The 2017 defense authorization bill would shift $18 billion from overseas contingency operations (OCO) to the core defense budget, starting a two-step process that would breach the defense funding limits of last year’s Bipartisan Budget Act.


House Budget Would Keep Slashing at Non-Defense Programs

April 4, 2016

As part of ongoing Republican efforts to balance the budget by spending cuts alone (and only in non-defense programs), the House budget would impose huge new cuts to non-defense discretionary spending after 2017 — cuts that would take that spending category far below even the historically low levels set by the 2011 Budget Control Act (BCA), as further reduced by sequestration.


House Budget Plan Cuts Non-Defense Appropriations Sharply After 2017

House Budget Uses Gimmick for More Defense Funding

March 18, 2016

The House Republican budget calls for considerably more defense funding than last year’s budget agreement allows, funneling extra funds through “overseas contingency operations” (OCO) in a classic gimmick.  This move, however, threatens more painful cuts in non-defense appropriations for 2017. 

First, some background.  Last year’s agreement included $74 billion in 2017 for OCO, which is...


House Bill Would Blow Hole in CDC Budget

March 14, 2016

The House Energy and Commerce Committee begins considering spending-cut legislation today that would, among other things, abolish health reform’s Prevention and Public Health (PPH) Fund.  Critics ...


Non-Defense Appropriations Falling Even Without Proposed New Cuts

March 1, 2016

Some conservatives are urging the House to cut $30 billion more from non-defense appropriations next year in an upcoming budget resolution.  As we’ve explained, their justification — that policymakers didn’t pay for the...

Non-Defense Discretionary Spending Falling to Historic Lows