Did You Say ‘Do away with USAID’?
CGP rarely blogs about U.S. politics, unless something drastic happens. Or rather, unless something drastic is proposed to happen.
Yesterday, the Republican Study Subcommittee unleashed a plan to cut U.S. government spending over the next ten years by as much as $2.5 trillion. Among imposing cuts on things such as the federal travel budget, Amtrak subsidies, and Obamacare, the RSC also proposes to virtually eliminate USAID. Although the final bill has not yet been released, according the summary, RSC’s plan suggests that cuts to USAID can save $1.36 billion dollars annually. That’s quite a sum considering that USAID’s budget in 2010 was approximately $1.65 billion. The plan also proposes to eliminate subsidies to the OECD (saving $95 million annually) and economic assistance to Egypt (saving $250 million annually). The GOP has talked about cutting the foreign aid budget for quite some time. The same budget that the Obama administration has proposed to increase to nearly $37 billion in 2011. So, it’s no surprise that USAID is on GOP’s list. While USAID, as many bureaucratic organizations, has waste that can be eliminated, passing such a large budget cut for an institution that has been around for 50 years seems unlikely.