Trump’s Proposed Budget Would Cut Science Funding

The NIH could see its budget slashed by $5.8 billion (approximately 19 percent), while the EPA could see a $2.6 billion budget cut (around 31 percent).

By | March 16, 2017

WIKIMEDIAAs anticipated, the Trump administration’s budget proposal includes substantial cuts at federal research agencies, including the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). If approved by Congress, the budget would enact cuts of $5.8 billion at the NIH—nearly 19 percent of the agency’s current budget—and more than $2.6 billion at the EPA—around 31 percent of the agency’s current allotment.

“A $6 billion cut to the National Institutes of Health is unacceptable to the scientific community, and should be unacceptable to the American public as well,” Benjamin Corb, director of public affairs at the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, said in a statement. “President Donald Trump’s fiscal year 2018 spending plan erases years’ worth of bipartisan support for the NIH, and the American biomedical research enterprise, which has long been the global leader for biomedical innovation. Cuts this deep threaten America’s ability to [remain] a leader.”

The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)—which includes the NIH, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and other agencies—would see an approximate 18 percent budget cut overall. While the administration’s budget proposal does not include a figure for CDC spending, The Washington Post reported, it does include a $500 million block grant to support states’ public health responses. This funding may be a meant to replace the CDC’s existing Prevention and Public Health Fund, which would be dissolved if the Affordable Care Act is replaced.

According to Science, “There appears to be no mention . . . of the National Science Foundation (NSF)” in the administration’s plan.

Even for the agencies that are mentioned in the proposal, uncertainties remain. The administration has stated that it plans to reorganize the NIH’s institutes and centers, but, as The Washington Post reported, “[w]ith few details available in the budget outline, it is unclear what kind of reorganization the administration envisions at NIH.” The plans made public at this point include elimination of the agency’s Fogarty International Center and a move of the HHS’s Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality into the NIH, according to The Washington Post.

The EPA likely also faces reorganization.  “The president wants a smaller EPA,” said Mick Mulvaney, director of the White House Office of Management and Budget (via The Washington Post). “He thinks they overreach, and the budget reflects that.”

Earlier this month, former EPA lawyer Bruce Buckheit told InsideClimateNews that the EPA was “past the point where you have fat to cut.”

See “Science Policy in 2017

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Comments

Avatar of: Reciprocalhokie

Reciprocalhokie

Posts: 2

March 16, 2017

Trump is giving away the store to our scientific competitors. Does he not know what he's doing or does he not care?

Avatar of: True Scientist

True Scientist

Posts: 59

March 16, 2017

There is no need to worry about scientific competitors in some areas of EPA and NIH interests.The race 'Who measures more subtle atmospheric temperature variations" is over. The accumulated TBs of data are backed up and stored in vaults of supporters and believers. Trump knows exactly what he is doing because he does care and we all should be thankfull for that.

Avatar of: True Scientist

True Scientist

Posts: 59

March 16, 2017

And, by the way, the proposed budget does not cut science funding. It cuts unnecessary and way overreached spending. Somebody has to clean the house at least once in a while...

Avatar of: Mike Holloway

Mike Holloway

Posts: 23

March 16, 2017

There's far too much false hope being placed in bipartisan support. Go on and look at the comments to this story on a right wing "news" site. Go on. They're ecstatic that the NIH is being cut. This is a new Republican party. Yes, there will be some defenders on the Republican side, but all you have to have done is keep track of the House Science committee and the growing Republican war on science to see where things are going. And now, with the liar in chief thinking he's reconstructing reality, things are much worse. The far right no-nothings enforcing their ideologies are being reinforced with the alt-right delusionals. No, keeping the "Ascent of Man" in the west has been made political and the Republicans have done it. The only way to fight it is politics, yes, while strongly soliciting bipartisan support. MARCH FOR SCIENCE APRIL 22ND! Put your feet were your mouth is, but don't put your foot in your mouth.

Avatar of: Neurona

Neurona

Posts: 69

March 16, 2017

Cutting American science does not make it "great again". Quite the opposite. 

Avatar of: ToledoLuke

ToledoLuke

Posts: 2

March 16, 2017

Don't just complain here, on FB, etc.- call or write your congressional senators and representatives, get your universitites and instituies to similarly protest; write letters to your newspapres, etc.

Avatar of: A_Scientist

A_Scientist

Posts: 10

Replied to a comment from True Scientist made on March 16, 2017

March 16, 2017

Not true about 'unnessary and way overreached spending'. Science finding is much lower than needed. Also, the budget proposal doesn't square with an increase in military spending - which even the military find extravagant!

Avatar of: A_Scientist

A_Scientist

Posts: 10

March 16, 2017

 

 

Not true about 'unnessary and way overreached spending'. Science funding is much lower than needed. Also, this budget proposal doesn't square with an increase in military spending - which even the military find extravagant!

 

Avatar of: Kathy Barker

Kathy Barker

Posts: 40

March 16, 2017

Will scientists finally come right out against war and militarism? Over half the discretionary budget goes to the military. Do you believe war is working? Do you want to keep funding it, while parsing from which other entity the money should be taken to give to science?

The roots of science funding are from the military. But we don't have to be silent around the military and war forever. There seems to be a real fear on the part of scientists about discussing war, a deep acceptance of the military that was according to corporations/climate change until a few years ago.

Avatar of: Paul Stein

Paul Stein

Posts: 220

March 16, 2017

Unlike many who wasted their time and energy jumping on our new President's twantings (tweet rantings), true scientists, real scientists and engineers looked for actual evidence regarding what exactly he was going to do to try to actually make America great again.  Evidence, facts, and numbers should appropriately guide our thoughts and actions.  When something, anything good happened, it should be appropriately applauded.  Otherwise, then, comment and act.

While it is vitally important to correctly evaluate all budgets to find waste, that should be left up to those with the appropriate backgrounds, education, and experience to do so.  To date, dozens of the science and engineering governmental appointees to the highest positions of the departments and agencies are still vacant.  Hence, with no real experts to do the jobs, amateurs, with their political agendas, have taken over.

Some may say that there are tons of fat in the Federal budget to cut and improve efficiency.  When one looks at the hyperbloated Department of Defense, one must obviously agree.  In most other parts of the government, especially the EPA and NIH, with comparably microscopic budgets, however, the proposed budgets are not cutting fat, but legs.  This is a slaughter, and the beginning of the end of 70 years of a concerted building of the World's greatest research enterprise.  Soon, the only place any research will be able to be performed will be at the Harvard's, Yale's, and Stanford's, those institutions with massive endowments to support limited efforts.  The rest of the universities will convert to more of what they have recently been heading with declining state funding, third class sites where all students are taught by adjunct instructors.

What has happened is that, due to their silent hopes that their publications and science will speak for itself, scientists and engineers have been relegated to that place where all the other weaklings go.  What is happening can only be viewed as a Stalinesque political purge of opponents, only no one dies.  If you want to react by marching, fine.  That will make you feel good for about two days.  The effect politically?  None.  So, become politically active.  Write your elected officials.  If they don't react, either vote them out or run for office yourself.
Avatar of: True Scientist

True Scientist

Posts: 59

Replied to a comment from Neurona made on March 16, 2017

March 16, 2017

Cutting wasteful spending does give America a chance to be GREAT AGAIN, there is nothing wrong with that.  Measuring everything that can be measured does not qualify as Science.

Avatar of: True Scientist

True Scientist

Posts: 59

Replied to a comment from ToledoLuke made on March 16, 2017

March 16, 2017

Yes, please, do it - stop complaining and call or write YOUR congressional senators and representatives, write letters to YOUR newspapres (they sure will be more than happy to publish all of them as long as they coincide with main stream media demagoguery), pander to passion, prejudice, bigotry, and ignorance and try to explain why taxpayers should keep pouring money into your deep pockets.

Avatar of: True Scientist

True Scientist

Posts: 59

Replied to a comment from A_Scientist made on March 16, 2017

March 16, 2017

One said  true, another one said not true... How should we, the scientists, decide on this? When funding is much lower and when it is much higher than needed? And needed for what? Why this budget proposal should square with military spending???

Avatar of: True Scientist

True Scientist

Posts: 59

Replied to a comment from Kathy Barker made on March 16, 2017

March 16, 2017

Before anyone comes right out against the war they should realize that there are different kind of wars. Successful fight against the war that protects you, your family, and the whole society may lead to discussions not about how much should be given to your research but to who will be killed next instead.

Avatar of: True Scientist

True Scientist

Posts: 59

Replied to a comment from Mike Holloway made on March 16, 2017

March 16, 2017

All right, let them MARCH FOR SCIENCE WITH THEIR FEET RIGHT NEXT TO THEIR MOUTH, that should look funny. What else is left for miserable Democrats who were destroying great America for so many years? Seems like they were intended to proceed to full annihilation. that's why they call any objection to this "a War on Science" and an acting President - the liar in chief... Someone on this site called what's happening "a Stalinesque political purge of opponents" enjoying at the same time all the privileges of living in free society. Wake up, real scientists, if anyone of this kind still is present around...

Avatar of: LAH

LAH

Posts: 5

March 17, 2017

Today's (3/17/17) Seattle Times has an article titled "Presidential Budgets Rarely Go Anywhere."  It goes on to say that's even true when the Congressional majority is the same party as the President.  There may yet be more hope for a half-way rational budget than at first glance.

Avatar of: John Saba

John Saba

Posts: 8

March 17, 2017

We need to cut military spending and increase spending on science, education, public health, etc.

We need to build, not destroy.

The current billionaire regime in Washington is intent on enriching themselves still further at the expense of ordinary people. They are destroying the country.

Avatar of: dumbdumb

dumbdumb

Posts: 73

March 23, 2017

Since when school bullies care about science or learning anything really?

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