Obama Rejects New Short-term Spending Bill That Includes Foreign Aid Cuts

U.S. President Barack Obama. Photo by: Pete Souza / White House

A new continuing resolution introduced by House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) on Monday (April 4), which includes a proposal to slash $832 million from U.S. State and foreign operations spending, was flatly rejected by U.S. President Barack Obama the next day.

The bill hoped to cut $12 billion in discretionary spending, covering funding rescissions, reductions, and program terminations.

U.S. lawmakers only have until Friday (April 8) to pass either a full fiscal 2011 budget or another short-term spending bill to avert a possible shutdown of the federal government. They are also set to begin deliberations for the fiscal 2012 budget.

On Tuesday (April 5), Obama dismissed the House Republicans’ new one-week budget plan.

“That is not a way to run a government,” Obama said in an impromptu news conference at the White House, as reported by The New York Times. “I can’t have our agencies making plans based on two-week budgets.” 

>> Rajiv Shah Makes Case for Robust Foreign Aid Budget

Rogers’ bill sought to slash $212 million in U.S. contributions to international financial institutions, $466 million for various foreign assistance accounts including development assistance and the Economic Support Fund, and another $237 million for United Nations and peacekeeping activities.

The bill, meanwhile, aimed to fund the entire $3 billion foreign military financing commitment for the U.S.-Israel Memorandum of Understanding for fiscal 2011.

Read more about U.S. foreign aid reform.

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  • Ma. Rizza Leonzon

    As a former staff writer, Rizza focused mainly on business coverage, including key donors such as the Asian Development Bank and AusAID.