Now That It's Passed, Here's What's In The Budget Deal

The House managed to approve a purportedly "bipartisan" budget deal early this morning after a marathon all-night session that was brought on by Sen. Rand Paul's self-indulgent insistence that he needed to "make a point" about excessive government spending...less than two months after he voted to blow out the deficit with the Trump tax plan...

Capitol

But now that the massive 600+ page bill has been passed, what, exactly, is in it?

For starters, it includes increases in both defense and non-defense spending...

Defense

...which will raise the annual deficit to $1.2 trillion, leading to even higher 10Y yields at least until the next recession hits...

Budget

Some highlights from the deal include:

Raises Spending Levels

The deal would increase government spending by nearly $300 billion over two years. It would increase discretionary defense spending by $165 billion over the spending caps that have been in place since the 2011 Obama-era budget ceiling battle left us with sequestration.

Non-Defense Spending

The $131 billion hike in non-defense spending would include $20 billion for infrastructure spending and $6 billion to combat opioid abuse and other mental health crises that President Donald Trump has promised to deliver, but has until now been reluctant to do anything aside from label the abuse epidemic a national health emergency.

Debt Ceiling

In one of the deal's key components for markets, an extension of the government's debt ceiling to March 2019 is one of the most pressing issues - even perhaps more pressing than the shutdown because of its potential to impact the US's credit rating (remember when the US was downgraded AA+ and how markets reacted?). The Treasury Department has warned that without an extension in borrowing authority by Congress, the government would run out of its "emergency measures" early next month."

Temporary Funding Measure

Since they've agreed to toss the caps, lawmakers' and their staff need to set to work on actually drafting a two-year budget.

Three

That could take weeks, so the bill also includes a temporary extension of funding to March 23. After that, Congress will need to approve an appropriations bill to pass a two-year budget.

Disaster Assistance

A disaster aid package of $90 billion for areas affected by Hurricanes Irma, Harvey and Maria, as well as the California wildfires, will also be included.

Immigration

Immigration legislation was famously not included in the deal expressly because of its divisiveness. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said the Senate will begin debating immigration legislation next week. House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi delivered a marathon, eight-hour speech earlier this week about young “Dreamer” immigrants in an attempt to extract the same promise from Ryan, who has refused to explicitly commit to a vote without the president's OK.

Those are the obvious provisions. But, as is typical of Washington, where lawmakers are often judged by their ability to deliver lucrative projects and other federal-government goodies to their state, the bill contains many surprising provisions, including tax incentives that were scrapped as part of the tax overhaul, as the New York Times points out.

It also includes a series of unexpected spending increases, including restoring some provisions that were jettisoned from last year’s $1.5 trillion tax package. And the bill includes an extension of 48 different tax credits that expired at the end of 2016, including several incentives meant to help particular sectors like mining and horse racing.

Here are some of the provisions:

Medicare Cost Watchdog Removed

The bill would kill the Independent Payment Advisory Board, which was devised to help keep Medicare spending growth from rising above a set level. No one has ever been appointed to the board, and Medicare spending has experienced unusually slow growth in recent years. But the board was long denounced by Republicans as a rationing board, and disliked by some Democrats for taking payment policy authority away from Congress.

Funding Changes for Public Health Programs

The spending plan would cut $1.35 billion in funding to an Affordable Care Act program meant to improve public health and prevention funding for states and municipalities

Another CHIP Extension

The bill would extend funding for the popular children's health-care program for four years.

Continued Fund For Abstinence Education

Rubbers are baaaaad m'kay?

A Break for Berea College

The spending bill restores a provision that was stripped out of the tax bill after becoming the center of controversy. The bill would exempt Berea College, a small private college in Kentucky that provides free tuition, from being subject to a new tax.

* * *

Of course, all of this won't mean anything if Congress can't push through the appropriations bill that - we hope - lawmakers are furiously setting to work upon as we write...

 

Comments

WorkingPoor exlcus Fri, 02/09/2018 - 12:47 Permalink

Old Hickory would be absolutely enraged at the state of affairs of the present. A single glance at her from him would have pelosi pissing herself and running away in terror. The hoity toity and excessively sissified way congress does OUR business.... yeeesh.

Trump is in his 70s... not certain of his actual physical condition. I could only imagine what a image boost it'd be if some schmuck rushed him and he knocked his ass to the ground. 

I'm tired of all this Byzantine BS of a budget. I've stated elsewhere on here, a congress that cannot or will not pass a budget should be entirely banned from all federal office, elected or appointed, after their sitting term is done, for failure to do one of their Constitutional duties.

WP

In reply to by exlcus

Coinista directaction Fri, 02/09/2018 - 11:11 Permalink

"By 2021, or 2025, whenever Trump's through hanging paper, the total will exceed $40 trillion "

I'm torn on this.  The "smart" snowflakes vote for even HIGHER spending and WAY more intrusive, overarching, in-your-face, Big Government. They'll truly be the ones harmed for life due to this.  On one hand, I say they get what they deserve (vote for).  On the other hand, I hate to see anyone harmed even if they're the "smartest person in the room" moron.

In reply to by directaction

SweetDoug directaction Fri, 02/09/2018 - 14:15 Permalink

'

'

'

In 2008, I said we'd be 15 trillion in the hole by 2016. Wrong.

 

In 2012 I said we'd be 20 trillion by 2020.

 

Since 2016 I've said...

 

If you think 2016 was crazy, you just wait.

 

2020 will amaze and astonish you.

 

2024 will t)errify you. (Joblessness due to automation, autonomous cars, robotics, 3d printing, VR/AVR, broke SS, MC, MCaid and our debt? 30 trillion.

 

Turn out the lights when you leave.

 

OJO

V-V

 

In reply to by directaction

SoDamnMad HardAssets Fri, 02/09/2018 - 12:01 Permalink

I read about this death of the Army green beret by the 2 Navy Seals in Mali. It said the 2 were skimming the informant money and he wanted no part of the fraud so they choked him to death. They have a fund which many skim that pays upwards of $20,000 to $60,000. for information. No wonder the Pentagon can't account for a trillion dollars.

In reply to by HardAssets

Sudden Debt Deep Snorkeler Fri, 02/09/2018 - 12:17 Permalink

Once a country crosses the 100% debt to GDP, it's lost.

Now, America changed the accounting about a decade ago when it already passed the 100% back then.

Now it's more like 160% if it where honest without liabilities.

 

And the proof that you can't stop the slide once you pass the 100% mark is there.

Each year, Merica needs more money just to keep the system stable.

And for the last decade, the cost of living has kept on going up while wages kept being stable or declining.

Americans will keep on gettig more poor with every year that passes.

And one day... POOF! Massive implosion.

Give it another decade and the game is up.

There will be plenty of dollars, that's not the problem, they'll just be worthless once the "official' debt is at 40/45 trillion.

 

In reply to by Deep Snorkeler

pods Iconoclast421 Fri, 02/09/2018 - 10:38 Permalink

I say make it a $4 trillion deficit. Fuck it. Go full retard.  Quicker that happens, the quicker we can watch it blow and start over with something that doesn't screw every dollar holder out of the real inflation rate in spending power each year.

Then maybe you would see people wanting to work again.  As of now, why bother?  You get screwed by the taxman, then double screwed by inflationary deficit spending.

The skim of inflation is that warm feeling you have when they say it's raining.  Yet it is not known by most everyone.  Oh wait, they control "education."

pods

In reply to by Iconoclast421

JimmyJones pods Fri, 02/09/2018 - 10:39 Permalink

#ImWithPods

Step 1, Pay off you home as soon as humanly possible.

Step 2, Divorce your wife (she is in on this, has to be to make it work)

Step 3, In the Divorce you get the House and all assets, free and clear and she gets full custody of the kids but doesn't seek child support.

Step 4, She quits her job and applies for every form of welfare under the sun.

Step 5, You offer your home up through Section 8 housing and interview until you come to your ex-wife and accept her as the tenant.

Step 6, You just so happen to start seeing your wife again and occasionally spend the night while collecting rent from Section 8 (wellfare)

Step 7, your kids love having a stay at home mom and she is happier to be with the kids rather than slaving away at work

Step 8, Your ex-wife enrolls in college for free as a single unemployed mother

Step 9, Your wife gets her doctorate or Law degree or whatever on the States dime

Step 10, You both enjoy living the high life.

In reply to by pods

Meat Hammer JimmyJones Fri, 02/09/2018 - 11:29 Permalink

I actually presented this to the Mrs. some time ago. She was appalled...talking about the sanctity of marriage (which is, apparently, a govt license), her pride, and blah blah blah. I asked her why she gets up and goes to work everyday, knowing that she’s being fist-fucked 6 ways from Sunday. No response.

Women would do themselves a huge favor if they tried to start thinking like men.

In reply to by JimmyJones