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The WatchHawk: Week eight of Trump’s administration

President+Donald+Trump+%28C%29+makes+remarks+as+Vice+President+Mike+Pence+%28L%29+listens+as+they+meet+with+the+Republican+Study+Committee+in+the+Oval+Office+of+the+White+House+on+March+17%2C+2017+in+Washington%2C+DC.+%28Mike+Theiler%2FUPI%2FAbaca+Press%2FTNS%29
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The WatchHawk: Week eight of Trump’s administration

President Donald Trump (C) makes remarks as Vice President Mike Pence (L) listens as they meet with the Republican Study Committee in the Oval Office of the White House on March 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Mike Theiler/UPI/Abaca Press/TNS)

President Donald Trump (C) makes remarks as Vice President Mike Pence (L) listens as they meet with the Republican Study Committee in the Oval Office of the White House on March 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Mike Theiler/UPI/Abaca Press/TNS)

The Tribune News Service

President Donald Trump (C) makes remarks as Vice President Mike Pence (L) listens as they meet with the Republican Study Committee in the Oval Office of the White House on March 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Mike Theiler/UPI/Abaca Press/TNS)

The Tribune News Service

The Tribune News Service

President Donald Trump (C) makes remarks as Vice President Mike Pence (L) listens as they meet with the Republican Study Committee in the Oval Office of the White House on March 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Mike Theiler/UPI/Abaca Press/TNS)

Samantha Durham, Assistant Opinion Editor

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Goodbye Meals on Wheels?

According to the Huffington Post, President Donald Trump’s proposed budget will completely eliminate all federal funding for the Meals on Wheels program. Meals on Wheels is a program designed to aid those that are poor, veterans, disabled or elderly members of the community that cannot leave their homes to get substantial food.

This program delivers nutritious meals to these individual’s homes, allowing them to be cared for despite their restrictions. According to Market Watch, Meals on Wheels is able to provide meals to those in need for a year, at a price roughly the same as a night in the hospital. Market Watch reported that it costs Meals on Wheels roughly $2,765 for 250 days of meals, while the average hospital stay can cost $2,271.

However, many are wondering how this program will continue to serve American citizens without government funding. Many of the members that use Meals on Wheels are retired or have lower incomes, making paying for healthy meals much more challenging. Some also question who will care for those in need and how much that care will cost if Meals on Wheels loses federal funding.

Trump’s Proposed Budget

Thursday President Trump revealed his first budget blueprint. In order to offset his plan to increase defense spending, Trump is proposing $54 billion dollar cuts to the federal government and programs across the board. Many, however, are unsure what programs are at risk and which are untouched by the budget proposal.

According to CNN, Trump’s latest budget plan would cut funding all together for multiple different agencies such as arts programs and public broadcasting along with large cuts to agencies such as the State Department and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Very few programs are expecting to see an increase in funding, however, a select number of them have been chosen to receive more money from the government. Those programs include Defense, Homeland Security and Veterans Affairs, reported CNN.

Here is a list from CNN’s article on the topic with programs expecting cuts and how much will be deducted:

Department   Budget Percentage Decrease
 Department of Housing and Urban Development  13.2%
 Department of Transportation  12.7%
 Department of Health & Human Services  16.2%
 Environmental Protection Agency  31.4%; 3,200 jobs being removed.
 Department of Education  13.5%; at least 20 programs to be cut.

As well as cutting funds for certain programs, CNN also reports the budget plan proposes eliminating funding for multiple independent agencies and along with zero out for a few federal programs. Some of the organizations include Corporation of Public Broadcasting, African Development Foundation, NASA’s Office of Education, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts.

White House Picks Fight with British Government, Apologizes

The White House has issued a formal apology to the British government after accusing them of aiding former President Barack Obama in spying on President Trump, reported CNN. The initial comment was made by press secretary Sean Spicer which he later stated was “unintentional”.

The White House was contacted twice on Thursday by British officials to discuss the comment made by Spicer. After discussing the issue, CNN reported that  Spicer and national security adviser H.R. McMaster offered an apology to the British government.

When British Prime Minister Theresa May was questioned in regards to this issue, she stated that UK officials had protested the claims to the Trump administration.

According to CNN, May stated, “We’ve made clear to the US administration that these claims are ridiculous and should be ignored. We’ve received assurances that these allegations won’t be repeated”.

New Healthcare Plan

One of the biggest things that President Trump vowed to repeal during his time in office was Obamacare. However, while efforts are being made by the US government to repeal former President Obama’s health care plan, Trump’s proposed plan is raising eyebrows.

According to NBC, Trump promised the Republican healthcare plan would cover more citizens, reduce premiums and overall costs while also avoiding any cuts to Medicaid.

However, those promises might be broken under the proposed American Health Care Act. For example, President Trump has said that no one would be “left behind” with his proposed healthcare act. But, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that at least 14 million fewer people would be uninsured in 2018, with 24 million fewer having healthcare in 2026, reported NBC.

Alongside insuring less people, this new healthcare plan breaks a few more promises. CBO expects that health insurance premiums would increase by 15% to 20%, leading to an eventual decrease. By 2026, it is expected that this plan will be 10% lower than Obamacare.

Trump also swore to not cut social security and not cut Medicare or Medicaid. However, that might not be the case under this proposed healthcare plan. According to NBC, Obamacare expanded Medicaid by about 11 million more people, but this new plan would reduce Medicaid by spending $880 billion by 2026 which is 25% less than current law. It is estimated that 14 million Medicaid patients would be removed from the program.

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The WatchHawk: Week eight of Trump’s administration