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Trump seeks to cut $3.6 trillion of government spending in budget

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Staff Writer | May 23, 2017
U.S. President Donald Trump wants lawmakers to slash $3.6 trillion in government spending over the next decade.
Donald Trump
America   The biggest savings would come from cuts to the Medicaid
The Trump administration on Tuesday will ask Republicans who control the U.S. Congress - and the federal purse strings - for the politically sensitive cuts.

The proposal in its current form is unlikely to be approved by lawmakers as they craft their own tax and spending plans but the document makes Trump's budget priorities clear and lays down a marker with Congress.

Trump seeks to balance the budget by the end of the decade, according to a preview given to reporters on Monday. There is some new spending in his plan for fiscal year 2018, which starts in October.

The Pentagon would get a spending hike, and there would be a $1.6 billion down payment to begin building a wall along the border with Mexico, which was a central promise of Trump's presidential campaign.

Trump's proposal foresees selling half of the U.S. emergency oil stockpile, created in 1975 after the Arab oil embargo caused fears of price spikes. The announcement surprised oil markets, and briefly pulled down U.S. crude prices.

The biggest savings would come from cuts to the Medicaid healthcare program for the poor made as part of a Republican healthcare bill passed by the House of Representatives.

Trump, who is traveling overseas this week, wants lawmakers to cut more than $800 billion from Medicaid and more than $192 billion from food stamps.