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. japan

    Seriously???americans living and working are saying glad I didn't vote or these clowns, people wake up these thugs don't give a shit about the woking class sure I agree cut all the subsidies that go to the big corp first, the go after the repug govt health care, they can afford to buy it on their, then money on all this reconstruction in other countries, then you will see a balance budget

    February 12, 2011 06:42 am at 6:42 am |
  2. C A Smith

    In hard times like this we all have to cut our spending but I think the cuts to social programs are a bad move at this time. I feel we spend to much on special interest things such as oil, high speed rail, and forign aid. If we cut our spending in those areas we wouldn't be so in debt.

    February 12, 2011 06:43 am at 6:43 am |
  3. Pedro

    I call it irresponsible attitudes. Why not cut from the riches instead.
    We need to create jobs and they are killing thousands of jobs.
    Please cut your salary in half and cut your health insurance so you have your total amount.

    February 12, 2011 06:43 am at 6:43 am |
  4. YumYumYum

    Republican. Just another word for idiot.

    February 12, 2011 06:43 am at 6:43 am |
  5. max

    Maybe they could give up their health benefits and then they could go get private healthcare insurance.

    February 12, 2011 06:44 am at 6:44 am |
  6. Scarf

    With TRILLION dollar annual deficits currently the norm, cutting a measly 100 Bil ain't gonna do squat. That said, I don't see any defense cutting in the GOP plan. Defense needs an immediate and permanent 100B annual cut. If we have to spend more on defense than all other countries on Earth combined, something is wrong with our foreign policy. Even if we make that defense cut and the GOP got all their proposal through, we are talking about less than 20% of the current annual deficit being reduced. We have a loooooooooong way to go to get financial matters in order by any possible measure.

    February 12, 2011 06:45 am at 6:45 am |
  7. robert fern

    a 100 billion dollar cut is but a 7 percent cut in this years deficit of 1.4 trillion.............and even that will not pass..........WE and our children are doomed until reality is faced and real non-discretionary cuts are made towards a balanced budget immediately......

    February 12, 2011 06:46 am at 6:46 am |
  8. Kevin M.

    Wake up America!!! Can't you see that the middle class is under attack by these right wing nut jobs. Take a close look at what these republicans are cutting, all the programs that help the middle class. Have you noticed what's not listed for cuts? No mention of cutting the spending of billions on tax cuts for big! Oh by the way Mr. Boehner where are the jobs?

    February 12, 2011 06:48 am at 6:48 am |
  9. Reginald

    It sounds like a great idea to cut the FDA and food safety inspections. We haven't had e coli or other food borne illnesses in a long time. So since our current inspections are working so well, let's cut their budget. Hopefully no Republicans will die from eating tainted food.

    February 12, 2011 06:48 am at 6:48 am |
  10. Curtis

    Oh wow, cutting money going to the people who make sure our food and drugs are safe, AND cutting funding to the organization that is trusted with our environment.
    This has been going on for years. The programs that were created to keep us safe end up costing big businesses a small profit... and since they pull for Republicans, the reds gotta look out for them. Pathetic.

    February 12, 2011 06:49 am at 6:49 am |
  11. levend

    Working class people subsidizing the tax cuts for the rich, that just sounds wrong. Instead of spending cuts how about stop supporting tax cuts for the rich.

    February 12, 2011 06:50 am at 6:50 am |
  12. F VanDevender

    Here is another way congress can save money, eliminate thier government paid for health plan and go out buy thier own policy at thier own expense

    February 12, 2011 06:51 am at 6:51 am |
  13. some guy in New Hampshire

    A lot of these programs that are targeted are actually beneficial and don't save much money in the long run. As a result, these efforts are, in a number of cases, counterproductive, cause pointless political drama, and don't accomplish real budget reform. Unless these folks are willing to cut defense, lift the Social Security cap, and reinvent Medicaid and Medicare, they're just playing to the crowd.

    February 12, 2011 06:52 am at 6:52 am |
  14. Sam

    Do these guys care about security or education? Let them slash their salaries if they are genuine

    February 12, 2011 06:58 am at 6:58 am |
  15. Midwest Guy

    I hope these Republicans are consulting with the best economists to make sure this is the proper way to achieve economic prosperity. My fear is that millions of more families will be affected; further spiraling our economy downward.

    February 12, 2011 07:00 am at 7:00 am |
  16. Thatguy

    With all of these budget cuts why hasnt anyone proposed a cut in the pay that congress receives? These are all programs that greatly effect the country.. In the mean time they still make over 100 grand a year... And why do they vote on their own salaries?? That should be mandated by the public...

    February 12, 2011 07:03 am at 7:03 am |
  17. Dennis

    Year after year of spending 10 billion a month to invade iraq. When we only had to give them facebook.

    February 12, 2011 07:03 am at 7:03 am |
  18. doris

    This is another, in a long list of crazy ideas from the republicans to make it appear that they are doing SOMETHING. But I still want to know where are the jobs, jobs, jobs they vowed to focus on for "the American people."

    February 12, 2011 07:05 am at 7:05 am |
  19. Lee Bartholomew

    still can't pay for the $900 billion tax cut last year. Defense spending is the the number one target and of course the repugs wont

    February 12, 2011 07:07 am at 7:07 am |
  20. Jason Thomas Perez

    I have a plan that will produce over 2000 jobs a day for teenagers and adults, if you would like to know what it is you can contact me at the email listed above

    February 12, 2011 07:08 am at 7:08 am |
  21. greenehorn

    Just roll everything back to when W. took office. Give the tax cuts back and end the wars.

    February 12, 2011 07:10 am at 7:10 am |
  22. Kreczk

    We need property tax reform.

    February 12, 2011 07:11 am at 7:11 am |
  23. Deanna

    How about, before suggesting a SINGLE cut to any current American program, the legislators first agree to significantly cut their OWN salaries and benefits? Think this plan will be hard for taxpayers to swallow? Try it out on yourself first.

    February 12, 2011 07:14 am at 7:14 am |
  24. Stephen

    This is the "dog eat dog" way to balance the budget; the bigger dogs eat the smaller dogs to keep their bellies full. I notice the administering dogs that voters elected don't mention a 30% cut to their pay and health insurance. Why is that? It wouldn't be because they're corrupt to the core, would it? A good leader never asks his team to do anything he wouldn't do. Kinda sums it up don't you think?

    February 12, 2011 07:18 am at 7:18 am |
  25. John Smith

    It looks like the Republican's are once again attemting to fund their welfare program for corporations, the rich, and the military industrial complex...on the backs of the poor,and the new poor (formerly the middle class). So, what is new aboutn that?

    February 12, 2011 07:21 am at 7:21 am |
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