House Republicans unveil dramatic spending cuts
February 11th, 2011
11:25 PM ET
12 years ago

House Republicans unveil dramatic spending cuts

Washington (CNN) – House Republicans unveiled a sweeping spending bill Friday evening that slashes hundreds of programs and agencies across the government – from education, to the environment to cops on the beat – setting up a showdown with Senate Democrats.

“The legislation includes the largest reduction in discretionary spending in the history of our nation – over five times larger than any other discretionary cut package ever considered by the House,” said House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers, R-KY, in a statement.

Read the full list of proposed cuts here.

Facing rebellion from conservatives – especially newly elected freshmen – House GOP leaders added $26 billion spending cuts from their planned proposal in order to fulfill a campaign promise to cut $100 billion in spending this year

The total spending cuts add up to $60 billion when compared to spending levels now funding the government. But it meets the GOP pledge to cut $100 billion in federal spending compared to what President Obama proposed for government programs for this fiscal year, which was never enacted.

Based on the President's budget for this year, $81 billion would be cut from non-security programs, and $19 billion from security related programs, all compared with the president’s budget proposal for 2011.

“These cuts go far and wide, and will affect every community in the nation. These were hard decisions, and I know many people will not be happy with everything we’ve proposed in this package. That’s understandable and not unexpected, but I believe these reductions are necessary to show that we are serious about returning our nation to a sustainable financial path,” said Rogers.

The Republican legislation calls for over 100 federal programs to be outright eliminated, including scholarships, family planning, school counseling, Teach for America, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, AmeriCorps, and the COPS hiring program.

The Department of Agriculture’s budget would see a 22% reduction compared with current spending levels: $88 million in cuts for Food Safety and Inspection; a $747 million cut in nutrition programs for women and children; a $241 million cut at the FDA.

Rep. Norm Dicks, D-WA, issued a statement saying these cuts will result in “furloughing the federal inspectors in slaughter and processing plants” because they would have to shut down for six to nine weeks.

The Labor Health and Human Services Budget would also face a 22% spending decrease: $1.3 billion in cuts for job training grants; a $1.1 billion cut to the Head Start education program; and $305 million in community service block grants.

The Department of Interior’s Budget is slashed by 14%. The biggest cuts here are aimed at the EPA – $3 billion – on everything from research on global warming, to vehicle fuel standards certification – amounting to 30% of its budget.

The Transportation and Housing Budgets would lose 24% of overall funding: $2.5 billion cut to high speed rail; over $650 million at the FAA, and well over $1 billion for public housing.

The measure also cuts $122 million from the White House budget, and prohibits funding for the so-called Health Care Czar and Climate Change Czar.

House Republicans will bring the spending bill that includes these cuts to the House floor for a vote next week.

The current spending bill keeping the government running expires on March 4th.

Many Republicans, especially freshmen in the House elected on slashing government spending, say they know many of these cuts will be tough to swallow, but call it imperative to getting the country’s fiscal house in order.

“If we don’t do something our kids and our grandkids are screwed,” freshmen Rep. Joe Walsh, R-IL, told CNN

“This is a moral issue acknowledging that there may be some very worthy programs that are going to get hurt, but we all have to suck it up,” he said.

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi called the Republican plan “irresponsible,” saying it “threatens jobs and economic growth, hampers our global competitiveness and harms the people hurting most: working families and the middle class.”

Many Republicans said they still hoped to try to cut more as the House debates the spending measure this coming week.

Democrats warn that deep spending cuts in the House will make it harder to negotiate with the Senate, led by Democrats.

"We are willing to meet the Republicans in the middle on cutting spending but they keep lurching to the right," said Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-NY.

Filed under: Budget • House Republicans
soundoff (323 Responses)
  1. diridi

    I still do not understand as to why GOP did not unveil spending when Reagan spent on Iran Arms and Ammunition sale, and Bush's Iraq war....which practically broke the nation like hell and while nation is reeling to good reports on economy, they want to cut spending and talk of deficit....all they want is to take power, go to war, do defense contract....send people to war...totally unnecessary, and unwanted....give people some war vet money...send them to is going will go on....Americans need to be very clever in electing....Nation now is on right track...things are going well.....I say to all, Obama will be staying on history books for ever...25 years from now, Obama is going to be the best president....he passed Health Care, and Fin. Reg. Legislation, which America needed desperately and direly...GOP, do not talk of cuts now and takes some is not piled up know....people know...

    February 12, 2011 08:20 am at 8:20 am |
  2. steve

    I'm sick of the lies. do they want to cut or not? everyone needs to take a hit. and I mean everyone! since the federal government employs so many people, i say 2 weeks furlough for a 5 year period is a good starting point. at least they have jobs at relatively good pay. it won't hurt them. it must start with the government if you expect others to buy in to all this cutting.

    February 12, 2011 08:21 am at 8:21 am |
  3. Kevin

    This is insane, the GOP is grandstanding, not once did they mentioned jobs. This is an attempted to stop our economic growth. They want the economy to get worse so they have something to run on in 2012. Senate minority leader mitch mcconnell said it best and I quote " Our single most important goal is to make Barack Obama a 1 term President", he mentioned nothing about jobs or doing what's best for America and stopping any type of job growth is a way to do it, Areica be damned in achieving their goals.

    February 12, 2011 08:22 am at 8:22 am |
  4. anaelisa

    Who finished paying for World War I and what about the then President authorization for World War II?Billion of dollars? Did all this get paid in full? Did the children enrolled in schools in the 1950and 60's worried about that?

    February 12, 2011 08:22 am at 8:22 am |
  5. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Doesn't Joe Walsh, R-IL, know that the republicans have already 'screwed' our children and grand children with their unfunded tax cuts, their unfunded wars, their unfunded drug programs, their TARP, and their attempt at repealing Health reform? Republicans are as un-American as they come, and should be known as Beck's Bagger Brotherhood.

    February 12, 2011 08:25 am at 8:25 am |
  6. RICO

    Why not cut the defense spending instead of cutting funding for education???? O thats rigth Republicans like people to be dumb so they can march them into war. I'm all for cutting down our spending, but education is a bad place. We are already falling behind in education, and cutting futher into it will just hurt our country even more.

    February 12, 2011 08:25 am at 8:25 am |
  7. HaHa

    How exactly are these cuts "Huge" they amount to less than 10% of the defecit, I think a more accurate description would be modest.

    February 12, 2011 08:25 am at 8:25 am |
  8. saywhat

    END THE USELESS WAR IN IRAQ. This is a very unnecessary spending and it only benefits the rich people's pocket and the Iraqi government.

    February 12, 2011 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  9. TheStig

    I think its a good idea. Maybe not such deep cuts are neccesary but something has to be done or obama will keep spending until we are 3rd world country.

    February 12, 2011 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  10. steven STEVENS

    it figures the repubs are cutting the funding of anything that they think will go contrary to what rthe middle class and poor need to survive or get ahead in the country....kill the education programs that will help people get into a better position to get ahead( if they keep us unprepared to go into the work place they can then say americans are too stupid to do the job so we must send it for information..kill npr and public broadcasting..they are to liberal and not in the best interest of the conservatives and corps of the country.. and early child hood programs must go they say ...again another of the tried and true porgrams that will prepare our kids for school hits the dust...ah but boy do they love the that tax cut for the rich..kill our babies and step on our kids but you better not take our money...after all we rich have a lifestyle that we must maintain so the folks we step an can have a dream of one day being wealthy just like us...

    February 12, 2011 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  11. Rick

    Good old Republican way. Trickle down economics (Regeanomics), cut where it's need the most. Continue to protect the Rich and there monies. Oh Ya! They'll pass it around! Wake-up America!

    February 12, 2011 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  12. Don61

    "We all have to suck it up"? Where's the pay cuts for congressmen? Notice the laws these guys make never decrease their bank account!

    February 12, 2011 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  13. Henry Miller, Libertarian


    The country is going irretrievably, economy-wrecking, broke at an insane pace, and the outrageous, wildly irresponsible, spending has to be stopped.

    In fact, the spending is going to stop one way or the other–either we control it ourselves, or we get to the point where even the Chinese won't lend us any more money. In the former case, we get to control where and how much to cut spending, doing so in a way that hurts the fewest possible people; in the latter case, it all comes to a screeching halt in an economic catastrophe, hurting millions of people.

    February 12, 2011 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  14. Triple A

    Start cutting, let the chips fall where they may. Myself, my family and friends can take care of any program the government can think about cutting. If you are supported by the government either willingly or not I'd think about re-evaluating things cause the chopping block is a coming. Time for people to start taking responsability for themselves. It is just going to be a tuff fight getting it past the Liberals (not all of them) that wants to try and make every one dependant on the government.

    February 12, 2011 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  15. Sadie Boyd

    Predictable and more than irresponsible. By taking money away from the WIC program they will reverse the headway this nation has made in making sure the very needy nourishes their offsprings. Prenatal nutrition programs and providing food for children under eight prevents future health problems, learning disabilities and obesity. The government does need serious cuts. No mention of the ridiculous war machines and the waste on farm subsidies and the oil energy. This proposal illustrates this group of people's values. These values are cruel and if implemented, it will push us further into a have and have not society. If these people succeed, we may have to walk like the Egyptians!

    February 12, 2011 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  16. revinger

    the party of no is the party of cruelty. they want to shrink government so that the billionaires can have bigger tax cuts. lots of guns, wars pollution and no unions. money continues to accumulate in the hands of the few. but with their gated communities they are insulated from the dirty masses.

    February 12, 2011 08:28 am at 8:28 am |
  17. D. Bunker

    And still not a peep from the Greedy Old Parasites about cutting tax breaks for the oil industry.

    February 12, 2011 08:28 am at 8:28 am |
  18. The Dude

    When is america going to wake up to this stupid dog and pony show that the ReTHUGlicans are prancing out about cutting spending? You don't cut spending in a bad economy.....this is economics 101....idiots

    February 12, 2011 08:29 am at 8:29 am |
  19. Illinois_Mom

    Yeah, the GOP making spending cuts (lol). Can you imagine the protests that will happen on some of these cuts? Get real, these are not logical cuts, these will make our country worse off not better. This would be a vote for increasing unemployment, increasing hunger, increasing violence, increasing crimes that will be done to survive, etc... Mass chaos would no doubt develop just to survive by some. These kinds of cuts are not for the better, they make the country worse off in the long run. I am really starting to wonder what life will be like for my kids when they become adults.

    February 12, 2011 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  20. John B

    I think the US needs to take a page from Egypt and toss EVERYONE OUT.

    February 12, 2011 08:31 am at 8:31 am |
  21. Calvin

    What about a reduced government that has to pay for their own health care and retirement. Has to use vehicles they buy with their own money. Maybe we need ways to make it cheaper to live then we would not need so much help. Maybe we need a Egyptian uprising.

    February 12, 2011 08:32 am at 8:32 am |
  22. m 1sterlurk

    So we'll slash the social welfare programs that keep our country stable and give poor people an opportunity at education, but we won't even put a dent in our needless military spending.

    Can we get rid of these people?

    February 12, 2011 08:33 am at 8:33 am |
  23. Roxana

    Way too much!

    February 12, 2011 08:33 am at 8:33 am |
  24. John

    Their nuts . Show me where they cut the rich lope holes . Just go after the poor . So may be we end up like egypt ?

    February 12, 2011 08:34 am at 8:34 am |
  25. DAW, NC

    seems that they are getting rid of a lot of the programs that do not fit their political agenda, surprise surprise, how about eliminating some of the special tax breaks and incentives for big business and their pet programs that they support. doubt that will really happen

    February 12, 2011 08:35 am at 8:35 am |
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