Trump to seek funds for Pentagon, border wall next week

Donald Trump will seek significant funds for the Pentagon and a wall along the US-Mexico border in the White House budget being released next week, says an administration official.

Trump will seek $750 billion for defense as a boost for the military, but he will cut non-defense discretionary spending by 5 percent below the cap, the official said, according to the AP.

The president had earlier called the Department of Defense’s current budget of $716 billion “crazy.”

He is also going to ask for more border-wall funding, though it is unclear how much more money he will seek, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The request is in addition to the $8.1 billion Trump already has access to, which includes around $3.6 billion he wants to shift from military accounts after declaring a national emergency last month.

On February 15, Trump declared a national emergency to bypass congressional approval and secure funding for the construction of his controversial wall.

A few days later, lawmakers in the House of Representatives voted to revoke the president’s national emergency declaration despite veto threats by the White House.

Congress had denied Trump’s request for $5.7 billion for the wall and instead approved nearly $1.4 billion.

The president, in his 2020 spending budget, will also make a request for money to establish his proposed Space Force branch of the military, the official said.

“Obviously we’re going to disregard it,” Rep. John Yarmuth (D-Kentucky), chairman of the House Budget Committee, told The Washington Post.

Trump wants to create a space force to protect satellites, tackle vulnerabilities in space and assert US dominance in orbit.

Space Force would be the sixth branch of the military alongside the Navy, Marine Corps, Army, Air Force and Coast Guard.

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