Too Much Omnibus (Apologies to The Who)

The Omnibus spending bill that Congress passed last week was over 2,00 pages. It was introduced Wednesday night, passed the House Thursday afternoon, and passed the Senate at around one o'clock Friday morning. So how many Senators and Representatives actually read the bill? My guess is zero for Senator Rand Paul.

Here is the House roll-call vote on the bill and here is the Senate roll-call.

Republicans are claiming that the bill is a victory for conservatives because it increases military spending by much more than domestics spending.  Of course not all conservatives are willing to accept increases in welfare spending if we get an increase in warfare spending.

The bill approved a total of $1.3 trillion. Of that, $654 billion goes to military spending, a $61 billion increase in what was already a bloated military budget. But yes empires don’t come cheap.

Furthermore, the bill spends $117 billion more than the Trump administration’s request and $63 billion over the spending caps.

The bill also provides the Department of Homeland Security with $47.8 billion, an increase of $5.4 billion. This includes a $114.6 million increase for the Transpiration Security Administration bringing the budget to $7.9 billion .

It  also  provides $21 billion for infrastructure projects.

The bill provides nearly $4 billion to fight the opioid crisis and $2.3 billion for school safety grants .

Some of this funding will go to prevention programs aimed at identifying those at risk of being school shooters, leading to violations of their civil rights.

You can read about some of the issues with opioid prevention programs here and here.

Here is a breakdown of spending increases for each cabinet department and a few agencies of interest (State is in here because it technically not a defense-related agency):

Education gets a $2.2 billion increase for a total of $70.9 billion.

Labor gets a $129 million increase for a total of $12.2 billion.

Agriculture gets a $2.1 billion increase for a total of $23.3 billion which includes a $135 million increase for the Food and Drug Administration bringing their budget up to $2.9 billion.

Justice gets an increase of $1.3 billion for a total of $29.9 billion including a $53 million increase for the FBI bringing their budget to $2.1 billion, a $124 million increase for the Drug Enforcement Agency bringing there budget to $2.6 billion. The department of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms gets a $35 million increase bringing it’s budget to $1.3 billion.

Commerce gets an increase of $1.9 billion for a total of $11.1 billion.

Energy programs with the Department of Energy are increased by $1.6 billion for a total of $12.9 billion and increases the Departments research budget by $868 million for a total of $6.26 billion.

The State Department actually gets a decrease of $1.8 billion because of reductions in support for UN peacekeeping missions. The U.S. Agency for International Development budget was cut by $24 million dollars bringing their budget down to “only” $1.6 billion. The bill also spends $16.8 billion in bilateral economic assistance, an $800 million reduction, as well as $7.6 billion for humanitarian assistance. The budget for multilateral assistance is cut by $253 million bringing it to $1.9 billion. Israel gets $3.1 billion, Egypt gets $1.425 billion, Jordan gets $1.52 billion and Georgia (the country not the state silly) and Ukraine both get an increase as does the Countering Russian Influence Fund which gets $250 million, which is a $100 million increase.

Transportation gets an $8.7 billion increase for a total of $27.3 billion.

Housing and Urban Development receives a $3.9 billion increase for a total of $42.7 billion.

The IRS gets an increase of $195.6 million for a total of $11.43 billion.

Securities and Exchange Commission gets a $47 billion increase for a total of $1.65 billion.

The bill does freeze the Environmental Protection Agency budget at $8.2 billion.

Increases spending on the National Endowment for the Arts and Humanities by $3 million dollars each for a total of $153 million.

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