The House and Senate passed starkly different blueprints for federal spending and revenue for the next decade. The major provisions in the budgets that are most relevant to the disability community are:
|House Budget||Senate Budget|
|Medicaid||Block grants Medicaid and cuts spending by $810 billion||$10 billion in Medicaid cuts with the caveat that none of those cuts can affect beneficiaries|
|Medicare||Turns Medicare into a voucher program and has steep cuts in Medicare payments to doctors||$265 billion in Medicare cuts|
|Social Security and SSI||Social Security not cut, but the President and Congress will be required to develop plans to ensure it remains solvent. $300 billion cut from the income security portion of the budget which includes Supplemental Security Income (SSI)||No changes|
|Non-Defense Discretionary Programs||$3.8 trillion cut beyond the across-the-board spending cuts||Replaces the across-the-board spending cuts with $493 billion in domestic spending cuts, in addition to specific cuts above|
An unusually large number of amendments were filed to the Democratic Senate Budget, though most were not voted on. Among these were several relevant to the disability community:
- Casey amendment to include the ABLE Act (filed but not voted on).
- Sanders-Harkin-Hirono amendment to express opposition to the chained CPI measure of inflation (agreed to by voice vote).
- Roberts amendment to increase funding for Individuals with Disabilities Education Act while cutting untested educational programs (filed but not voted on).
- Roberts amendment prohibiting the HHS Secretary from using funds for implementation of health benefit exchanges until it is certified that the Affordable Care Act has resulted in reduction in average health insurance premiums by $2500 (filed but not voted on).
- Cardin amendment to improve oral health care for children with Medicaid coverage (agreed to by voice vote).
- Hatch amendment to repeal the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate to obtain health insurance (filed but not voted on).
- Risch amendment for replacing Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance program with a block grant to the States (filed but not voted on).
In addition, there was an important amendment relevant to the non-profit community:
- Thune amendment to protect charitable giving deduction from being capped, limited, or eliminated to pay for new spending as part of any new tax increase (filed but not voted on). Learn more at: