Trump to Propose ‘Historic’ Defense Spending Increases, Cuts to EPA, State Dept.

'We're going to do more with less'

Donald Trump
• February 27, 2017 2:33 pm


New budget guidance by the Trump administration sent to federal agencies on Monday laid out "historic" increases to defense spending to be financed by cuts to other agencies including the EPA and State Department.

The guidance, which is expected to be included in President Trump's budget blueprint he will release in mid-March, calls to increase military spending by $54 billion.

"This budget will be a public safety and national security budget and will include a historic increase in defense spending to rebuild the depleted military of the United States of America," Trump said during a meeting with governors in the White House. "This defense spending increase will be offset and paid for finding greater savings and efficiencies across the federal government. We're going to do more with less."

Trump added that savings can be found in the Pentagon budget by renegotiating military contracts. The budget blueprint is expected to not cut entitlement programs such as Medicare and Social Security, a position held by Trump during the presidential campaign.

The boost in defense spending would be paid for in part by decreases in the State Department and the $8.1 billion EPA budget, Reuters reported. The report cited anonymous officials, who said the State Department could be cut by as much as 30 percent.

The White House would also use the increases to the Pentagon's budget to increase the size of the Navy's fleet for "a more robust presence in key international waterways and chokepoints," Reuters reported. Trump has promised to build a 350-ship fleet, which would require the biggest build up the Navy has seen in decades.

Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said during Monday's press briefing that the White House would not release the full budget until May.