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US Deficit Spikes Again, on Track for $1 Trillion: 'Wasteful Spending Is Unacceptable'

04-11-2019
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A new report shows the US Government is still spending much more money than it brings in. That means the US is continuing to borrow hundreds of billions of dollars just to keep paying its bills.

The Treasury Department reports a $146.9 billion deficit in March, bringing the total deficit for the first half of the budget year to $691 billion. That's up 15 percent over the same time period last year.

Treasury officials say the deficit is on track to pass $1 trillion when the fiscal year ends in September.

It's not due to a decrease in tax revenue though. In fact, because the economy is booming and more Americans have jobs, there's now more tax revenue coming in. The Associated Press reports, "Tax receipts are running slightly higher than a year ago."

Meanwhile, new budget battles are underway as Republicans control the Senate, Democrats control the House, and each side wants to keep funding for the government programs and departments that are important to their supporters.

Progressives are pushing for spending hikes for domestic programs, and conservatives in the Trump camp want a bigger Pentagon budget.

Top Senate Republican Mitch McConnell wants bipartisan talks on a new budget pact to fund federal agencies over the next two years.

President Trump's acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, is a budget hawk. He's signaling that the White House is taking a harder line on budget negotiations this time around.

But others in the Trump administration say they're facing an uphill battle to trim spending.  

"Democrats aren't even writing a budget and are pushing for a reckless 'caps deal' that would cost taxpayers over $2 trillion and explode deficits," said a senior Trump administration official, speaking on condition of anonymity because the discussions have been private. "We've made clear to Congress that type of a wasteful spending is unacceptable."

 

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