House

Pelosi warns Mnuchin to stop ‘illegal’ $4.3B cut to foreign aid

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) warned that proposed cuts to foreign aid already appropriated by Congress could put a budget deal with the White House in jeopardy in a Sunday letter to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

“I request that you work within the Administration to stop this proposed rescission, which GAO [Government Accountability Office] states is illegal, which violates the good faith of our budget negotiations, which important Republicans say is ill-advised, and which overrides Congress’ most fundamental Constitutional power,” Pelosi wrote in the letter to Mnuchin.

{mosads}Pelosi enclosed a letter from Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.), the former chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, expressing their own concerns about the proposed $4.3 billion in cuts to State Department and United States Agency for International Development funding.

The Speaker also included a bipartisan letter warning against a new rescission package signed by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) and ranking member Michael McCaul (D-Texas) and Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and ranking member Bob Menendez (D-N.J.)

“A move to rescind funding absent policy input from the Department of State and USAID [U.S. Agency for International Development] only undermines our national security interests and emboldens our adversaries,” Rogers and Graham wrote. “We strongly urge you to reconsider this approach.”

Other members of the Appropriations Committee also warned against the attempted rescission Friday.

“The Trump administration’s continued efforts to illegally withhold funding that Congress has approved subverts critical norms in our democratic process,” Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.) said in a statement to The Hill on Friday.

“We are insisting that the administration spend the appropriated foreign assistance funds, and are working with GAO to make sure the law is followed,” she added.

Tags Eliot Engel Hal Rogers Lindsey Graham Michael McCaul Nancy Pelosi Nita Lowey Robert Menendez Steven Mnuchin

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