The Republican Study Committee, which represents 165 House Republicans, issued a proposal today to cut more than $2.5 trillion from the federal budget in the next 10 years – with the aim of balancing the federal budget entirely through budget cuts in non-military programs. Buried in the RSC plan is this line item: “Eliminate taxpayer subsidies to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. $12.5 million annual savings.”
Expect continuing attacks of this kind from the right-wing denialist war on climate science contingent.
Lori Montgomery at the Washington Post reported online this afternoon:
House GOP group proposes deep spending cuts over next decade
A band of conservative House Republicans said Thursday that Congress should slash more than $2.5 trillion from the federal budget over the next decade, primarily by cutting non-defense appropriations back to 2006 levels and firing 15 percent of the federal workforce. …
The [Republican Study Committee] also wants Congress to cut $80 billion from an upcoming temporary resolution that would keep the government running through September. The government is currently functioning under a temporary resolution that expires in March. …
The RSC, which represents 165 House Republicans - more than half - also offered a list of programs and subsidies they hope to eliminate, including payments to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the International Fund for Ireland, the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, Amtrak, the Hope VI public housing program, Title X Family Planning programs and USAID foreign aid programs.
The group wants to eliminate federal subsidies to the Legal Services Corp., which provides legal assistance to the poor, and cut off more than $360 million in annual aid to the District government and the Washington Metro system. …
The Republican Study Committee “unveiled” the Spending Reduction Act of 2011, “which begins to address the rapidly growing national debt by making substantial spending cuts immediately and throughout the next decade.” A two-page overview of the budget-cutting plan includes a long list of proposed federal program eliminations and cutbacks. Read it for yourselves.
One proposed line item would deal a radical blow to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change by killing $12.5 million in annual U.S. support. I’m sure we’ll hear some more war on climate scientists rhetoric in defense of this know-nothing proposal.
Zero cuts are proposed in the super-sized U.S. military budget.
No new revenue is proposed as a means of helping to bring the budget into balance.
Presumably cooler heads on both sides of the aisle will prevail on some of these cuts, and limit the damage to the country that actually enacting them would entail. By being shielded from the full brunt of the harm that proposals such as this would do, much of the public will tend to remain ignorant of the real implications of the choice to send as their representatives to Congress members who would support such proposals. In the meantime, considerable effort will have to be expended in attempting to limit the damage.
For now the RSC types seem to have forgotten to single out for trashing the funding for the $2 billion U.S. Global Change Research Program – the nation's support for climate observing and monitoring systems, scientific research on climate and associated global environmental changes, and national climate change assessments. The impacts of human activity on planet Earth. Don’t tell them. They'll get to it, I expect.
Then we’ll see whether the White House and the non-denialists on the Hill will stand firm for climate research.