If the Trump administration proposes a budget that increases defense spending while drastically cutting funding for the State Department and foreign assistance, Congress will reject it and ensure that American soft power continues to be a national security priority, according to Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.), the chairman of the Senate appropriations state and foreign operations subcommittee.
“It’s dead on arrival, it’s not going to happen, it would be a disaster,” Graham said Tuesday. “This budget destroys soft power, it puts our diplomats at risk and it’s going nowhere.”
The Trump administration has not shared many details of its budget proposal with key members of Congress, other than to announce that the administration intends to seek a $54 billion increase in defense spending for fiscal year 2018 over congressionally mandated caps, which would bring the base defense budget to $603 billion for the year, not including emergency supplemental funding. Administration officials also said Monday foreign aid will be cut to pay for it.