The Big Three networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC) pulled out all the stops and sharpened their knives for their effort to tear into the White House’s budget proposal on Thursday. “President Trump has unveiled his first budget proposal covering all the things the federal government pays for and how he wants to spend the money,” announced anchor Lester Holt during NBC Nightly News, “There's a lot more money for the military but there are critics who say popular programs and the poor would pay the price.”
“It's the primary promise of the Trump presidency,” reporter Peter Alexander declared after Holt’s announcement. “A budget blueprint spending nearly $60 billion more on defense, Homeland Security and Veterans’ care offset by deep and in some cases unprecedented cuts,” he seemed to whine, “The State Department slashed by 29% targeting foreign aid. The environmental protection agency sliced by 31% including programs to combat climate change.”
Alexander painted a grim picture for the future of scientific advancement. “And the National Institutes of Health budget trimmed by nearly $6 billion. Dr. Robert Clark said that would devastate his breast cancer research,” he warned without mentioning the fact there were plenty of private organizations conducting cancer research as well. He didn’t even entertain the possibility of the organization could receive funds from non-government organizations that fund such research, nor that there could be other non-necessary research projects whose budgets could fund the research.
But NBC’s fear mongering didn’t stop there. “Eliminating federal aid to a grant that helps this Texas Meals on Wheels program feed 3,000 seniors every day,” Alexander fretted. Singling out the very popular Meals on Wheels program had proven to be a very common narrative for the liberal media since the budget’s release, regardless of the fact that the block grant program which funds MoW is abused by other programs.
Meanwhile on ABC’s World News Tonight, reporter Mary Bruce had her own complaints, “Tonight, the White House touting and defending a budget that would dramatically scramble the nation’s spending priorities.”
“The big losers in the President’s budget? The EPA, the State Department, and education. And you might be seeing less of this guy,” she noted as she played a clip of Sesame Street’s Big Bird and other Muppets singing. “The big winners? Military spending a whopping $54 billion request. Veteran Affairs and Homeland Security,” she said.
Bruce was the only reporter to interview a supporter of the cuts, but it was just some random woman in a parking lot somewhere, who told her, “I know cutting back on different things kind of hurts, but I would say our national security is more important.”
Almost hypocritically, Alexander closed out his report by slamming the President. “What the President’s proposal doesn't do? Balance the budget,” he chided. It’s rather ridiculous for anyone in the liberal media to suddenly care are the deficit and the national debt. They didn’t care when Obama jacked up the national debt to almost $20 TRILLION.
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World News Tonight
March 16, 2017
6:35:56 PM Eastern
DAVID MUIR: Next, the controversy surrounding President Trump's new budget. His first budget out today. And tonight, even some Republicans giving it a chilly response. The President calling his budget “America first.” $54 billion more for the Pentagon, and billions in cuts to domestic and foreign aid programs. The White House pressed on school programs, Meals on Wheels and the American people paying the tab for that wall. At least for now. ABC's Mary Bruce on the Capitol-- Hill.
[Cuts to video]
MARY BRUCE: Tonight, the White House touting and defending a budget that would dramatically scramble the nation’s spending priorities.
MICK MULVANEY: We'll remind you that this is what we’re calling it the “America First Budget.” We had an America first candidate. You now have an America first president, and it shouldn't surprise anybody that we have an America first budget.
BRUCE: The big winners? Military spending a whopping $54 billion request. Veteran Affairs and Homeland Security. The President asking for a combined $4.1 billion in taxpayer money to start building his border wall, though Trump has promised Mexico will ultimately foot the bill.
MUIR: So they’ll pay us back.
DONALD TRUMP: Yeah, absolutely. 100 Percent. Yes.
MUIR: So the American taxpayer will pay for the wall at first?
TRUMP: All it is we’ll be reimbursed at a later date.
BRUCE: The big losers in the President’s budget? The EPA, the State Department and education. And you might be seeing less of this guy.
[Sesame Street singing]
BRUCE: No more federal funding for public broadcasting.
MULVANEY: I put myself in the shoes of that -- that steel worker in Ohio. The coal miner, the coal mining family in West Virginia. The mother of two in Detroit, and I'm saying, okay. I have to go ask folks for money, and tell them where I'm going to spend it. Can I really go to those folks, look at them in the eye, and say, look I want to take money from you, and give it to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting?
BRUCE: And on science and research:
MULVANEY: Regarding the question as to climate change, I think the President was fairly straight forward. We're not spending money on that anymore.
BRUCE: But many of the programs on the chopping block are intended to help the poor. Federal funding for Meals on Wheels and afterschool programs, nixed.
MULVANEY: And that’s what they’re supposed to do. They are supposed to help kids who don't get fed at home get fed so they do better in school. Guess what? There is no demonstrative evidence they are doing that.
BRUCE: But this Pennsylvania family disagrees.
ROB: If they weren't in the program, they probably wouldn't excel in school as good as they are right now to be honest with you. This is a program that should not be cut.
BRUCE: Some job training initiatives gone. Like the program that helped Kentucky coal miner, Rigel Preston learn new skills.
RIGEL PRESTON: As a former Marine, I understand that the military needs more support. But I don't feel that ARCs are one of those things that needs to be cut.
BRUCE: For some Trump supporters we talked with in West Virginia, the deep cuts are worth it.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN 1: I know cutting back on different things kind of hurts, but I would say our national security is more important.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN 2: Yes.
[Cuts back to live]
MUIR: And Mary Bruce with us live from Capitol Hill tonight, and Mary, late word this afternoon that even some Republicans are distancing themselves from these budget plans?
BRUCE: David, some Republicans are voicing serious concerns about many of these deep cuts, especially to the State Department. Even the House Speaker today noting the President's budget is simply an opening offer, David.
MUIR: Mary Bruce with us again tonight. Mary thank you.
NBC Nightly News
March 16, 2017
7:05:10 PM Eastern
LESTER HOLT: Now to a big fight brewing over money. President Trump has unveiled his first budget proposal covering all the things the federal government pays for and how he wants to spend the money. The President is keeping his promise. There's a lot more money for the military but there are critics who say popular programs and the poor would pay the price. NBC’s Peter Alexander has details.
[Cuts to video]
PETER ALEXANDER: It's the primary promise of the Trump presidency.
MICK MULVANEY: We have America first. An America first candidate. You now have an America first president and it shouldn't surprise anybody that we have an America first budget.
ALEXANDER: And tonight, the President's team says he's delivering. A budget blueprint spending nearly $60 billion more on defense, Homeland Security and Veterans’ care offset by deep and in some cases unprecedented cuts. The State Department slashed by 29% targeting foreign aid. The environmental protection agency sliced by 31% including programs to combat climate change.
MULVANEY: We consider that a waste of your money.
ALEXANDER: And the National Institutes of Health budget trimmed by nearly $6 billion. Dr. Robert Clark said that would devastate his breast cancer research.
ROBERT CLARK: And if you have one in eight women getting breast cancer in their lifetime, you can imagine how many people are affected, families and communities are affected.
ALEXANDER: But critics say low income Americans would be the hardest hit with sweeping cuts to affordable housing and job training programs. Eliminating federal aid to a grant that helps this Texas Meals on Wheels program feed 3,000 seniors every day.
DAN PRUETT: The loss of federal funding absolutely means meals won't be served. People won't be helped.
ALEXANDER: What do you say to the Americans that are ultimately losing out?
MULVANEY: To take the federal money and give it to the states and say: Look we want to give you money for programs that don't work. I can't defend that anymore.
ALEXANDER: But the president does add money for school choice. Praised tonight at this charter school here in Washington.
EMILY LAWSON: As a charter operator that means we could get more funding to expand to serve more students.
ALEXANDER: What the President’s proposal doesn't do? Balance the budget.
MAYA MACGUINEAS: It has done nothing to improve the fiscal picture that we face which is really quite significant and severe right now.
[Cuts back to live]
ALEXANDER: The White House is also calling for more than $4 billion to build that border wall that President Trump said Mexico will pay for. This budget outlines the President's priorities but Democrats and even some Republicans say it's dead on arrival. Lester.
HOLT: Peter Alexander at the White House. Thanks, Peter.