Trump to Cut Aid to Women, Infants & Children as He Spends Millions of Taxpayer Dollars on Golf
WIC Under The Knife In Trump’s Budget
Trump’s budget is cruel – and, as evidenced in its proposed cuts to the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program, it is cruelest to those who can least afford the cruelty.
The greatest irony – and biggest insult – is that Trump has little problem cutting aid to the vulnerable among us while simultaneously dropping massive loads of taxpayer money on travel to his private resort, where he can play golf. Presidenting is hard, and the only thing that alleviates the stress of dropping bombs and proposing to take the food out of the mouth of American children is hitting the links, apparently.
Trump’s budget proposes a cut of $200 million to the WIC program, one of the most successful programs the government offers.
WIC isn’t just about formula. WIC provides prenatal education that focuses on important nutritional aspects. It provides vouchers that enables pregnant and nursing mothers to purchase healthy, filling food for herself, her baby, and her children under the age of five. It offers breastfeeding education and support and yes, it provides formula – an expense that many families would struggle mightily with, were it not for WIC.
WIC has also done much to eliminate so-called “food deserts” in urban areas, as stores begin to stock the items, such as cheese, milk and fruit, listed on the vouchers, in order to meet demand. Furthermore, there has been a noted reduction in childhood obesity, due to the nutrition education mothers are given.
Here is a statistic everyone needs to know:
More than half of all infants born in the United States benefit from WIC.
Only one person benefits from Trump’s frequent golfing.
WIC Works – So Why Cut It?
In short, WIC provides health initiatives that reduce infant and maternal mortality and morbidity. It is an incredibly successful program that should be considered successful and, as such, embraced by both sides of the political spectrum.
And the program, despite its proven success, is already troubled. The Guardian reports:
“WIC differs from other forms of welfare in that not everyone who is eligible for WIC assistance is guaranteed to receive it. In 2013, the program served about half of all infants born in the US, but only 83% of eligible infants. Congress’s inability to pass a budget that year also forced many WIC field offices to close.”
Trump’s budget cut would further cripple a program that, despite its problems, still served nearly 8 million people in the United States in the first quarter of 2016. An estimated 75 percent of those Americans are infants and children.
These proposed budget cuts will “impede WIC’s ability to provide local education programming and breastfeeding support, or administer its existing programs.”
Meanwhile, there is now a website devoted to whether or not the president is at Mar-a-Lago. Because that’s a thing we now need.
The Vulnerable Pay For Trump’s Golfing
If, as Trump’s White House Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said, tax money should only fund programs that are successful, then WIC should remain fully funded.
“We can’t spend money on programs just because they sound good,” Mulvaney said. “We’re not going to spend money on programs that cannot show that they actually deliver the promises that we’ve made to people.”
Sounds like an argument for WIC, not against it. Also, what program does taxpayer-funded golf trips for the President fall under? Asking for a friend.
But, despite the program’s success, the trend has been to cut the budget, which then diminishes the program’s reach. One can only assume that, at some point, when the budget has been slashed to the point that the program is no longer effective, it can then be done away with altogether – which may very well be the Republican plan.
And yet, this is supposed to be the party of pro-life. They campaign on it, they run on it, people vote on it, and yet they are moving to slash a program that services the very babies they purport to want to save. And, with a Republican ensconced in the White House, and the GOP controlling both the Senate and the House, there is little doubt that these cuts can and will happen, all in the name of fiscal responsibility.
Even while our own tax dollars flow from our pockets into the coffers of Mar-a-Lago, in order to let our president play golf, almost every weekend. And there has been very little outcry from those pro-life fiscal conservatives on that.
Because every time Trump spends the weekend at Mar-a-Lago, he costs taxpayers $3 million. Every. Time.
A Lesson In Republican ‘Logic’
Just for clarity, here’s a breakdown.
Pro-life president Trump wants to cut the budget. And so he takes money away from the vulnerable, millions of whom are infants. That cut will lead to a decrease in babies receiving the actual food they need to survive. It will also lead to a decrease in nutrition in both mothers and babies. This will lead to an increase in maternal, fetal and infant deaths. The pro-life Republican party will probably agree, citing fiscal responsibility, even while simultaneously trying to curb access to free birth control and abortion services, which they will point to as their pro-life credentials, while ignoring the fact that they are cutting a program proven to reduce infant and maternal mortality. And, in the meantime, nothing will be said about the upward of $100 million in tax payer dollars projected to be spent on Trump’s golf trips in the first year of his presidency alone, if he continues this pace.
And that, ladies and gentleman, is today’s lesson in Republican logic, Republican priorities, and Republican fiscal “responsibility.”
Joe Mahoney/Stringer/Getty Images
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