The White House on Tuesday defended the details of a major budget deal worked out between President Donald Trump and Democrats in the Congress, even as conservative groups and some GOP lawmakers denounced it as a budget boondoggle which would only increase spending and further raise deficits and debt.
"This deal on the discretionary spending caps is nothing short of a surrender by Republican “leadership” in the House and Senate and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin," said the group Freedom Works.
The plan would raise spending levels to $320 billion more than the budget caps in current law for 2020 and 2021 - though the actual increase in spending from 2019 would be much less.
With no briefings at the White House, the public argument on behalf of the deal was carried in the rain on Tuesday by the President's top economic adviser, Larry Kudlow.
WATCH: White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow says budget agreement reached by lawmakers 'isn't everything we hoped for' but 'is a pretty good deal under the circumstances' pic.twitter.com/WxmGOlpXo5— Reuters Business (@ReutersBiz) July 23, 2019
On Capitol Hill, Republicans said it was the best deal possible.
"In a compromise, neither side gets 100 percent of what they want," said Sen. David Perdue (R-GA).
But the details produced a lot of grumbling from GOP lawmakers in the House, who want to see less spending - not more.
"The spending deal before us would continue Washington’s reckless spending with an unlimited line of credit," said Rep. Mark Green (R-TN).
"This deal irresponsibly jacks up spending by $320 billion," said Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), who complained 'this deal just kicks the can down the road again.'
"This proposal digs the US deeper into debt," said Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN), who said it was hard for budget haws to support a deal that adds more money to the deficit.
"Our credit card is maxed out," said Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC). "What this budget deal does is ask the credit card company for another $320 billion in credit."
Fiscally responsible legislators will have a tough time supporting a budget cap deal that adds $2 TRILLION to the deficit over the next decade. If @SpeakerPelosi wants a deal, we need a different option. This proposal digs the US deeper into debt. https://t.co/ihX3iWByuT— Jim Banks (@RepJimBanks) July 22, 2019
I will vote no on this so-called "deal." The GOP is now, in the name of "defense spending," mortgaging our future national & economic security. But worse, unlimited bipartisan government spending risks losing our character & sense of self-reliance as a nation. #RejectSpendingDeal https://t.co/B6oEa0yDnV— Chip Roy (@chiproytx) July 23, 2019
I will be voting against the two-year budget deal.— Ted Budd (@RepTedBudd) July 23, 2019
I did not come to Congress to be an enabler of Washington's spending addiction. This budget deal not only suspends the debt ceiling, it hikes federal spending by over $300 billion. (1/3)
A House vote is expected on the plan by Friday, with Senate action expected next week.
Lawmakers needed to act now - before going home on an extended summer break - because Trump Administration officials were worried that the debt limit needed to be expanded soon after Labor Day.
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