Dems reject Trump's State Department cuts in $56B spending bill

Dems reject Trump's State Department cuts in $56B spending bill
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House Democrats on Thursday released a $56.4 billion spending bill funding the State Department and foreign operations for fiscal 2020, casting aside President TrumpDonald TrumpSanders: Reinstating SALT deduction 'sends a terrible, terrible message' GOP braces for wild week with momentous vote One quick asylum fix: How Garland can help domestic violence survivors MORE's request to slash spending at State by 21 percent.

“This bill reflects Congressional priorities to advance U.S. foreign policy and our foreign assistance programs,” House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita LoweyNita Sue Lowey Progressives fight for leverage amid ever-slimming majority Biden needs to tear down bureaucratic walls and refocus Middle East programs Committee chairs continue their lawmaking decline MORE (D-N.Y.), who also chairs the subcommittee on State and foreign operations, said in a statement.


“It rejects the Administration’s unacceptable, irresponsible FY2020 requests and reaffirms strong support for reproductive health, climate change, and multilateral assistance. This bill would make strong investments that would protect our national security and repair America’s global standing and commitments.”

Trump's third annual budget request recommended dramatically reducing funds to nondefense discretionary spending, calling for the elimination of entire agencies and eliminating popular programs. Each year, Congress has resoundingly rejected the request, raising spending caps and adding to overall nondefense spending.

The proposed 2020 spending bill, which will be marked up in subcommittee on Friday, would increase the budget for the State Department and related agencies by $885.8 million as compared to current levels, add $174.2 million for United States Agency for International Development operations, and add $481.6 million for multilateral assistance through international organizations and banks.

The bill would also shift the $2.2 billion Economic Support Fund from the category of bilateral economic assistance to the category of security assistance.

The bill also includes $6.3 billion for fighting HIV/AIDS around the world, $3.3 billion in security aid to Israel, $425 million for the Peace Corps and funding for a new International Development Finance Corporation, which was created in a 2018 law.

— This report was updated at 11:33 a.m. to correct the figure for Peace Corps funding.