Opinion—Just How Draconian are the Budgetary Cuts to Federal Agencies?

Jun 1, 2017

The answer is based upon one’s perspective

Now that Mr. Trump is president his actions and the actions of the executive branch of the government continue to drive political and administrative activity in Washington.

The opinions of political analysts are divided between those who argue that the Administration is saving the country from the financially destructive over-regulation of the Obama era (The Wall Street Journal) and those who argue that that the draconian budget cuts of the Trump administration are eviscerating services for the poor and environmental safeguards (The Washington Post).

Reviewing the executive orders to date, the budget cuts reduce a significant percentage of the budgets of agencies such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, however, they do not completely dismantle these agencies.

If the assertions of the more conservative analysts are accurate, the budgetary reductions, and the parallel reductions in red-tape, reduce federal spending to pre-Obama levels. This, it is argued, cuts spending for regulations that shackle business and intrude into the personal affairs of individuals.

The states, according to this line of reasoning, are best suited to determine what regulations most benefit their citizens.

Those opposed to the Trump Administration’s actions are concerned the budget cuts will create enormous hardship for millions of Americans, ruin the environment, and cripple the arts.

Regardless of one’s perspective on the Trump Administration budget cuts, it is worth noting that the current actions of the executive branch are creating a surprising phenomenon in Washington. Congress, or more particularly, members of Congress, are paying attention to the needs of their constituents. The voting in both Houses reflects this. Rigid party control of voting is eroding. Members of Congress are concerned that if they don’t assert themselves on behalf of the people they represent, the President will usurp their power.

Congress is doing its job. This is a positive development.

Don Wallis has more than 40 years experience in residential and commercial construction, and land development. He also has a law degree and currently teaches Environmental Law at Santa Fe Community College.