President Trump has made rebuilding America’s military one of his top priorities. He says it is more important than controlling budget deficits. However, that is not the way White House budgeting director Mick Mulvaney apparently sees it. He has structured proposed defense spending increases for the current fiscal year and next year in a manner that makes them almost impossible to pass on Capitol Hill. Among other things, they would require Democrats in the Senate to go along with repealing a law capping defense outlays even though Mulvaney proposes to fund the military increases by slashing domestic programs important to the party. That’s the exact opposite of what Democrats have said would be required to win their buy-in on more defense spending. Mulvaney’s approach may match his own deficit-hawk views, but they are undermining the president’s agenda. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
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