Why It Matters: Trump's Budget = Proposal (Not Law)

On February 27, 2017, President Trump announced that his budget proposal will significantly increase military spending and significantly cut nonmilitary spending. People reacted to this with either high praise or sharp criticism, accompanied by excitement or worry.  

But such strong reactions are premature. Trump's proposal is just that - a proposal.  Budget changes need to come in the form of laws in order to be effective.  A proposal is not law.  

When it comes to the nation's budget, it's Congress that has control over the wheel, not the President.  This is because of a law called the Congressional Budget Act of 1974.  We can thank Richard Nixon for this.  Congress passed this law when Nixon refused to spend nearly $12 billion of money that Congress wanted him to spend because he thought it would cause high inflation.  

Coming back to Trump, regardless of what side you are on, there've been a lot of things to get worked up about.  We're here to tell you that this shouldn't be high on your list (yet).  Instead, focus on what Congress does for our nation's budget and respond accordingly.  Here is a breakdown of how budget changes become law. 

To download the full size of the infographic, click here.

trump budget