Good morning … examining the Senate Democratic spending bill

“The House bill would cause backlogs in Social Security claims, undermine nuclear weapons safety, remove more than 200,000 children from Head Start and close poison control centers across America,” Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) said last week. “These are just a few specific examples of the irresponsible nature of the House Republican bill as a whole.”

The Senate amendment in many ways is the inverse of H.R. 1. Democrats criticized Republicans for not cutting security spending, and their amendment seeks to correct this by cutting $2.13 billion more in defense spending (due to savings found from revising economic assumptions and freezing civilian pay).

But the amendment also adds back $189 million for Customs and Border Protection, $288 million in funding for nuclear non-proliferation efforts and $460 million for veterans’ disability claims.

The Senate would also add back nearly $900 million in health spending, $1.1 billion for clean energy programs and $200 million to a global food security fund. Among other things, the Senate amendment adds more money for NASA, the Army Corps of Engineers and several other programs compared to the House bill.

Democrats are touting their own cuts, which include eliminating the Career Pathways Innovation Fund, taking back $600 million in unused funds for fire suppression on federal lands, capturing $76 million in unobligated balances from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and cutting $150 million to fund transit service.

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