Radical Stimulus Surgery: What Got Cut

Feb. 9, 2009
Via CNN.com (who got the information via an unnamed Democratic leadership aide), a list of the programs targeted for either partial or total cut via the compromise legislation currently moving towards passage in committee. Partially cut were: • $300 ...

Via CNN.com (who got the information via an unnamed Democratic leadership aide), a list of the programs targeted for either partial or total cut via the compromise legislation currently moving towards passage in committee.

Partially cut were:

• $300 million from federal fleet of hybrid vehicles (original bill $600 million)
• $3.5 billion for energy-efficient federal buildings (original bill $7 billion)
• $100 million from law enforcement wireless (original bill $200 million)
• $200 million from Environmental Protection Agency Superfund (original bill $800 million)
• $100 million from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (original bill $427 million)
• $75 million from Smithsonian (original bill $150 million)
• $100 million from FBI construction (original bill $400 million)

Fully eliminated were:

• $50 million for Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service
• $1 billion for Energy Loan Guarantees
• $100 million for National Institute of Standards and Technology
• $40 billion for state fiscal stabilization (includes $7.5 billion of state incentive grants)
• $25 million for Marshalls Construction
• $55 million for historic preservation
• $122 million for Coast Guard polar icebreaker/cutters
• $100 million for Farm Service Agency modernization
• $65 million for watershed rehabilitation
• $16 billion for school construction
• $3.5 billion for higher education construction
• $100 million for distance learning
• $98 million for school nutrition
• $50 million for aquaculture
• $2 billion for broadband
• $10 million state and local law enforcement
• $1 billion for Head Start/Early Start
• $5.8 billion for Health Prevention Activity
• $2 billion for Health Information Technology Grants
• $600 million for Title I (No Child Left Behind)
• $300 million for federal prisons
• $300 million for BYRNE Formula grant program
• $140 million for BYRNE Competitive grant program
• $50 million for NASA
• $50 million for aeronautics
• $50 million for exploration
• $50 million for Cross Agency Support
• $200 million for National Science Foundation
• $100 million for science
• $50 million for detention trustee
• $4.5 billion for General Services Administration
• $89 million General Services Administration operations
• $50 million from Department of Homeland Security
• $200 million Transportation Security Administration
• $122 million for Coast Guard Cutters, modifies use
• $25 million for Fish and Wildlife
• $55 million for historic preservation
• $20 million for working capital fund
• $165 million for Forest Service capital improvement
• $90 million for State and Private Wildlife Fire Management
• $1.25 billion for project based rental
• $2.25 billion for Neighborhood Stabilization
• $1.2 billion for retrofitting Project 8 housing

Man, I get seriously tired just reading that list. And that's only the amount that was cut! And by most honest accounts (i.e., not the accounts you see on Fox "News"), the stimulus package as it stands is probably not big enough to sustain aggregate demand long enough to cushion the economy as it hits the pits.

What cracks me up, though, is that all these cuts were made in response to specific Republican requests, and even despite this huge list of cuts, the amount of Republican support that this by all accounts economically crucial stimulus bill is going to get is negligible at best. Forecasts are, it will receive three Republican votes in the Senate, and not a single Republican vote in the House. This is likely to be the least support that's actually needed to pass a piece of legislation favored by everyone from the AFL-CIO to National Association of Manufacturers (including all but three Republican state governors), but as he moves into his third full week as president, President Obama may well take this early experience as a lesson in the futility of expecting post-partisanship within the Washington beltway.

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