Trump budget chief: Cutting veterans pay isn't a big deal


Trump's budget director said it's fine to take from veterans benefits to balance the budget.

Trump's acting budget director said there's no downside to the administration's proposal to take money from veterans benefits.

Acting Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Russell Vought testified before the House Budget Committee on Tuesday.

In his 2019 budget, Trump has proposed rounding down the cost-of-living adjustments given to veterans. Military Times notes that the idea "has been decried by veterans groups in the past as unfairly using their earned benefits to balance the budget."

But Vought said, "We don't think [the cuts] will have any adverse impact" when asked about the attack on veterans by Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA).

"No adverse impact? No adverse impact to decreased cost of living adjustments?" Moulton asked incredulously.

"That's correct," Vought replied.

"I think you should speak to some veterans, Mr. Vought," the congressman replied, ending the exchange.

The cold dismissal of veterans' concerns is the latest in a long line of slights and attacks on the military from Trump. He largely views the armed services as a useful backdrop for his presidency, via venues like parades, rather than as an institution to be supported and respected.

Trump also loves to hide behind the military's large public support to prop up his unpopular presidency.

In the same budget document, Trump fraudulently takes credit for the "largest" increase in military pay in a decade, but the military received larger increases twice under Obama.

Trump is again planning to hurt veterans, but instead of expressing some shame or regret for him doing so, his budget director is attempting to say hurting them is in their best interests.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.