Trump’s Proposed Budget Would Spell Disaster for Low-income Communities

March 24, 2017

While the Trump administration says it wants to help low-income Americans, it just put forth a budget that puts wealthy Americans first, Chuck Collins told Rising Up with Sonali. “They’ve been trampled by the traditional Republican shrink government agenda: deregulate corporations, transfer wealth to the wealthy,” he said.

There is a disconnect between Trump’s support base and the fact that many of his proposed cuts will hit them the hardest. “People take government for granted, ” he said. “They don’t see what they get for their tax dollars. The irony is that the states that tend to send elected officials that want to shrink government actually tend to be the most states that get the most back from their federal tax dollars.”

Collins went on to say that the budget is “setting out the vision and priorities for limited government, and it’s a compilation of some of the more extreme ideas we’ve heard about.”

“I don’t think Trump has a sense of just how much rural America depends on an engaged federal government to help the quality of life for people in those communities,” Collins explained.

Additionally, there is no tax or revenue plan that lines up with this budget, Collins explained. “Trump  wants to lower corporate taxes, eliminate the estate tax and Alternative Minimum tax, and shift the obligations to low and middle income working people, at the same time that they’re losing services,” he said.

Yet, Collins doesn’t think the proposed budget plan will pass as is. “The good news is that people are going to wake up and see what’s at risk here, there’s going to be a pushback,” Collins said.  “Picking rural communities and low-income voters as the people who are going to carry the burden of these budget cuts is a huge political mistake.”

When asked about the Democrats’ potential response to the proposed budget plan, Collins said that it will be “the social movements and pressure on the streets that will encourage Democrats to stand up and not allow this to happen.”

Watch the full interview on Rising Up with Sonali.

Chuck Collins

Chuck Collins is the Director of the Program on Inequality and the Common Good at the Institute for Policy Studies, where he co-edits He is an expert on U.S. inequality and the racial wealth divide and author of over ten books and dozens of reports about inequality, climate disruption, philanthropy, the racial wealth divide, affordable housing, and billionaire wealth dynasties. His newest book is a novel, Altar to an Erupting Sun (Green Writers Press), a near-future story of one community facing climate disruption in the critical decade ahead. See more at His 2021 book, The Wealth Hoarders: How Billionaires Spend Millions to Hide Trillions (Polity Books), unmasks the industry of professional enablers that assist the ultra-wealthy to hide wealth and dodge taxes.  He is also author of the popular book, Born on Third Base: A One Percenter Makes the Case for Tackling Inequality, Bringing Wealth Home, and Committing to the Common Good (Chelsea Green); He is co-author, with the late Bill Gates Sr. of Wealth and Our Commonwealth, (Beacon Press, 2003), a case for taxing inherited fortunes.  See more at

Tags: American economic policy, American politics, economic inequality