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Budget, Budget, Budget, Budget Rockin' Everywhere

I hope you all appreciate my post title. It has me giggling. We all try to keep a sense of humor in this confusing and tumultuous time. 

I have been getting quite a few questions about the federal budget process lately, so I thought it was time to brush up on my knowledge of it and get down to business. Shout out to my sister for all of her interest and concern with the goings-on of the government, even when it gets convoluted

HISTORY

Article 1, Section 8 grants Congress the "power of the purse." What this constitutional provision does not do is define HOW the process for creating a budget should go, or the president's role in that.

The 20th century brought much in the way of establishing a budget process. Federal organizations such as the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) took form to set roles and responsibilities for this complicated process.

KEY STEPS TO CREATING THE BUDGET

Each year, the government raises trillions of dollars through taxes (which won't last long if 45 cuts corporate taxes), and the U.S. Treasury borrows money by issuing bonds. You can read more about the budget deficit here and here.

The budget is divided by (a) mandatory spending and (b) discretionary spending.

Mandatory spending is made up of programs established via authorization laws, i.e. entitlement programs (Medicare, social security). Congress is not allowed to reduce funding for these programs without changing the authorization law itself.

Discretionary spending must be approved each year by Congressional appropriations processes, and is made up of things like national defense, education, transportation, and many more.

    CONTINUING RESOLUTIONS

    This term has popped up frequently in the news in the past few months.

    When a budget cannot be passed by April 15, Congress has the option of passing a CR.

    Photo created and owned by Couch Activism. Please do not share without credit and/or permission.

    Photo created and owned by Couch Activism. Please do not share without credit and/or permission.


    LEARN MORE

    Continued Opposition: AHCA

    Shoutout to Teachers of the Year