House Republicans release first specific spending cut proposals
February 9th, 2011
12:04 PM ET
9 years ago

House Republicans release first specific spending cut proposals

Washington (CNN) –After months of being vague on exactly what federal programs they would slash in their quest to cut spending, House Republicans Wednesday released a list of some 70 specific cuts.

House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers is putting a wide range of agencies and programs on the chopping block, from environmental and energy spending, to job training and longtime GOP targets, like the arts.

"Make no mistake, these cuts are not low-hanging fruit. These cuts are real and will impact every District across the country – including my own," said Rogers in a statement.

The cuts will be part of the spending bill the House plans to vote on next week to keep the government running through the rest of this year. The current spending bill expires March 4th.

Some of the highlights on the GOP spending cut list: EPA , $1.6 billion; Job Training Programs, $2 billion; Community Health Centers, $1.3 billion; High Speed Rail, $1 billion; Family Planning, $327 million; National Institutes of Health, $1 billion; NASA, $374 million; IRS, $593 million.

A list of the proposed cuts can be found on the House Appropriations Committee Website.

A spokeswoman for Rogers tells CNN that this is intended to be "illustrative" of the full list of spending cuts they plan to unveil Thursday. That will include the outright elimination of some 60 federal programs.

Last week House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, announced cuts he is recommending for the rest of the year that would add up to $35 billion when compared with spending levels currently funding the
government. Ryan's proposed cuts would be $58 billion compared with spending recommended by President Obama for 2011.

Either way the cuts will fall far short of the $100 billion in cuts this year that House Republicans vowed in their so-called Pledge to America.

Conservative Republicans in both the House and the Senate have been pressuring House GOP leaders to keep that promise. House conservatives hope to offer amendments during debate next week for additional spending cuts.

Asked whether he would support these deeper cuts House Speaker John Boehner deflected the question, saying, "Let's let the House make that decision. It's not about my decision. It's not about anybody's else's decision,"

Boehner added, "All Members – Democrats and Republicans ought to have the chance to involve themselves in the process of legislating and let all members represent all Americans to develop how much cutting the American people really want."

One of the conservatives proposing more cuts, House Republican Jeff Flake who just joined the Appropriations Committee, opposed the overall levels set by the committee and said he plans to offer amendments to push for the full $100 billion that GOP leaders proposed to cut.

"We've got to get to $100 billion or we're not serious," Flake told reporters after the Appropriations committee meeting on Tuesday.

But a senior House GOP aide tells CNN they have looked into the possibility of slashing an additional $43 billion in spending, and determined it would likely mean "cutting salaries and expenses for federal agencies, which means people."

While this GOP aide said that the cuts they are already proposing will no doubt mean job losses, the goal is to "minimize" that and cutting tens of billions more "would mean taking away government jobs and putting them on unemployment rolls."

The GOP aide was speaking on condition of anonymity in order to talk freely about internal Republican deliberations.

Filed under: Congress • House Republicans
soundoff (74 Responses)
  1. needNewGov

    So basically, it's screw the middle class and the poor. Gee I'm surprised. Where's the cut on wasteful Defense spending? I can't wait to hear what the average American will say when Medicare and Social Security gets it's turn.

    February 9, 2011 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  2. bobden

    Hal Rogers may be good at getting elected, but he is clearly not good at thinking, or at problem solving. The problems being our nation's economy, our resources being stolen by big companies, our jobs being sold to other countries.
    And many more. He is just another self-serving republican.

    February 9, 2011 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  3. vic nashville tn

    Cut EPA , $1.6 billion breath polluted air and drink polluted water

    Cut Community Health Centers, $1.3 billion no health service for poor people

    Republicans proved again they work for rich only

    February 9, 2011 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  4. Ty

    Way to go...........cutting everything that we need. The Rep are BIG GOV........they want the Gov to control every woman who is with child....... abortion.... so talk about big gov., you Rep are fools. We are watching you.........

    February 9, 2011 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  5. duke

    What happened to cutting those oil subsidies??
    What about cutting foreign aid to wealthy nations??
    What about ALL of you rich washington folks cutting off your "tax payer funded health benefits??
    By the way politico has a interesting artical on the 12 gopers who declined their health coverage and now they don't like how much they pay,and a few of them have spouse's and family members with pre-existing conditions,and they don't like the way the insurance company is treating them(put that artical up CNN!!

    February 9, 2011 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Fair is Fair

    "Get ready people and look up what APARTHEID means, then you will understand exactly what Republicans represent and why President Obama has been fighting so hard to maintain the middle class. This isn't about fear, it's the truth."

    No. When you use such words, you're the one spreading fear.
    Not at all. LOOK IT UP.
    Fear-mongering is your Party asserting non-facts like Death Panels, the killing of your granny, the President is a Nazi, socialist, he's raised your taxes, and he hates White people. Booga booga.

    @Lucullus: Yes, I noticed the same thing. Must not speak ill of those that are too scared of imprisonment to leave the country.

    February 9, 2011 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  7. A True Centrist need a job and/or life my friend. It looks like you have way too much time on your hands.

    Just curious, how did the writers of this article choose which spending cuts they wanted to highlight in the article? The wording in the article certainly appears one-sided.

    Also, does the decrease in the IRS' budget include the extra 20k employees the President hired last year? What exactly gets lumped under "Job Training Programs"? The article leaves me with more questions than answers...not good.

    February 9, 2011 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  8. Asif

    Why are most media outlets being so lazy? Why don't they ever let us know what % of the total budget these cuts represent. As far as we know it could just be a 2% cut in the whole budget. Which is completely meaningless.

    February 9, 2011 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  9. Sniffit

    EPA , $1.6 billion – Big Oil and coal anyone? Pharmaceutical companies and nukes? Chemical and plastics companies? Scrap metal and recycling? Guess whose neighborhoods will be first to develop strangely high incidence rates of cancer and other diseases. Go ahead...guess...I'll make it easy by giving you choices...will it be Beverly Hills or lower-middle-class Bumblefart, NJ or a high-minority-population inner city surrounded by industrial properties?

    Job Training Programs, $2 billion – Keeping unskilled labor unskilled helps businesses like Walmart hire minimum wage employees for only part time positions so they can avoid providing any benefits. Besides, take a guess who the GOP and their constituents think get the lion's share of the benefit from these programs....guess...

    Community Health Centers, $1.3 billion – Well, duh, messing with women's rights to abortion is apparently their top priority after messing with health care, underfunding and closing community health clinics helps mess with the poor, another top agenda item for the GOP, who would like to just see them die or leave the country because they think it's mostly blacks and hispanics.

    High Speed Rail, $1 billion – Name me a GOPer who likes an employed union member construction worker. I'm waiting...

    Family Planning, $327 million – Again, directed at limiting abortion services and messing with the poor...see community health above.

    National Institutes of Health, $1 billion – Gotta stop all those statistics and studies from being generated that show what's wrong with our country's health care system and insurance industry...they're decidedly inconvenient for giant insurers and social conservative domestic policies and religiosity driven nonsense.

    NASA, $374 million – This one I'll actually give them, although it's going to cost us in terms of layoffs and NASA's contributions to our security technology.

    IRS, $593 million – Ask yourself...who is it who really finds effective IRS oversight and enforcement to be most inconvenient. Is it you and the vast majority of people in the country, who most likely spent 30 minutes filing a 1040EZ form for like $20 thru turbotax online or something and then received a check in the mail or a direct deposit after a couple weeks and now don't have to worry about it until next year? OR is it giant corporations, lobbyists, politicians, and the ultra-wealthy, who are ALWAYS busy trying to scam the system for deductions, cuts and tax shelters and, in many cases, getting caught and punished for it after findi a way to report so little income they pay $0 in taxes?

    February 9, 2011 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  10. tinb

    Why not supply a link to the House Appropriations Committee Website? No, we can't make it too easy for people to get informed. They might acquire an informed opinion. That wouldn't be too good for our democracy would it?

    February 9, 2011 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  11. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Where are the cuts involving the Dept. of Defense?
    Must protect their contributor's defense contracts at all cost otherwise how will they win their 'elections'?
    I noticed however that social programs are being slashed left and righ, along with those that provide some sort of education be it job training or family planning.
    Keep them dumb and pregnant AND unemployed huh GObP?Is this how you're fulfilling your oath to those stupid enough to re-elect you?
    They deserve what they get from you.

    February 9, 2011 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    That all being said, I'm tempted to say we should let them have whatever they want on the cuts, so we can take another step closer to finding out where Robespierre is hiding amongst our 310 million fellow citizens. Sure, Americans have been docile an stupid and accepted the abhorrent widening of the wealth gap over teh past 4 decades and the shrinking and abuse of the middle-class, but that doesn't go on simply doesn't. Let the GOP, corporate America and the ultra-wealthy learn their lesson the hard way after the rest of us do and it wakes us the hell up.

    February 9, 2011 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  13. Matthew T

    Now you can cut the Defense budget by 100 to 150 billion of their almost 400B budget. its funny how the GOP says they want JOBS JOBS JOBS but yet they want to cut job training programs by 2billion. then cut the EPA so lets just people destroy the planet and murder endangered animals. cutting family planning huh not smart becuase that gonna cut prevention costs.. How about congress take a pay cut.. lets say 15% Im really sick of the GOP they say they want to cut 100B well they can so they with one cut but not they want to cut all these little things that acutally are beneficial. I need to talk on this issue CNN please contact me becuase i will tell anyone the senate, the house, even president obama what they need to cut.. Also members of congress and the president need to be adults and reform Social Security, Medicare, Medicad, and reform gun control laws. Who cares if its not popular you need to do what is right and what needs to be done from keeping the country from going broke. Now these cuts are not going to solve the 14trillion debt we face in one year but over time they will make a dent in it.

    February 9, 2011 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  14. GL

    I want President Obama to raise tax cuts back up on the rich. They can not budget the budget on the backs of the poor. Once again, Republicans continue to F over the poor to keep the rich happen. TAX INCREASE ON THE TOP 2 PERCENT RIGHT NOW!

    February 9, 2011 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  15. Liberal4Obama

    No Social Security, Medicare, Defense cuts?

    GOP = JOKE!

    February 9, 2011 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  16. GL

    8~9% unemployment and they want to cut job training programs. Nothing like shooting yourself in the foot, USA.

    I was thinking the same thing! No jobs and now we will have no job training programs. Repubilcans really do hate everybody that is not rich.

    February 9, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  17. NC

    The cuts Sound like a poor people death panel to me.

    February 9, 2011 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  18. GL

    Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services -$96M

    Well to go Republicans continue to make sure the Mentally don't get care for.

    February 9, 2011 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  19. Jc Ohio

    Hmmmmm ... how about subsidies to the coal – nuclear & oil industries. If they're so cost effective and self sufficient ... the why hand them Billion$ annually.
    Then the big corporate farms ... why on earth any of these industries need to get Gov subsidies is baffling!

    February 9, 2011 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  20. Sgt Schultz

    100 Billion in cuts won't amount to diddly squat. Get real Republicans. Why only NOW do we finally have the Republicans putting a plan on the table?

    February 9, 2011 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  21. artraveler

    If we get the larger and larger hurricanes in the coming years they are forecasting, I assume that the Republican response to NC, SC, GA, FL, AL, MS, Al and TX (all Republican states) will be to tell them to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps. That did so much good with the Bush response to Katrina!

    I guess one aspect of this failure to recognize global warming and the the rising seas is that those states will be smaller landwise in the future.

    February 9, 2011 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  22. Indy

    Think Again makes more sense then Huck,Mittsy,Sideshow Sarah,Newty,Pawlenty could ever offer up

    February 9, 2011 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  23. Jc Ohio

    GI Joe

    I'll be impressed when they cut congressional salaries by at least 30% and pick up the tab for their own health care and retirement benefits. It's what WE have to do. And we don't get retirement benefits after 6 measley years. Make them work 20 or 25 before they get the MINIMUM.

    Yoo GI Joe ... members of Congress are federal employees and do pay for their H/C as well as their pensions under FERS. Which they must meet eligibility requirments for ... just look up FERS and the requirments to draw a pension! While you're at it, actually look into how a Defined Benefit is calculated ... % x yrs of service x Final Average Salary ... which can be reduced depending on age & years of svc at time of retirement!

    February 9, 2011 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  24. Rick in Phx

    It's a sad day CNN when I can read your board and tell who are the Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity people. I would just like someone to explain to me how ANYBODY can justify giving the rich tax breaks and turn around and take money from the poor??? The idea of the more money the rich have then the more money they will spend completely contradicts the means by which the rich become rich. The rich get rich by making as much as possible and spending AS LITTLE as possible. So instead of Obama keeping his word and finally making corporations put in their fair share. Once again the Great thinkers in our country believe they can get blood from a turnip by taking from the have nots to balance the budget. Good luck with that. It's worked so well with Reagan and both Bushs.

    February 9, 2011 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
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