Trump’s budget entails steep cuts for diplomacy, foreign aid

February 28, 2017 GMT

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. officials say the Trump administration is proposing deep cuts in spending for diplomacy and foreign aid programs to help pay for increased military spending.

Officials familiar with the proposal say it calls for slashing 37 percent of the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development budgets. Development assistance would take the biggest hit. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to discuss the spending plan publicly before it is presented to Congress.

In the current fiscal year, the State Department and USAID got $50.1 billion, a little more than 1 percent of the total federal budget. Officials say a 37-percent cut would likely require reductions in staff, including security contractors at diplomatic missions abroad.