Tags: Donald Trump | small government | policy shift | ideology | budget

Trump, Budget Boss Send Signal of Shift on Small Government

Image: Trump, Budget Boss Send Signal of Shift on Small Government
Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

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Thursday, 13 Apr 2017 10:58 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Is the Trump administration shifting away from the vision of smaller government candidate Donald Trump and the Republican platform championed in the 2016 campaign?

That was what many small government conservatives worried about this week. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal over the weekend, President Trump said he wanted to keep the Export-Import Bank most conservatives in Congress want abolished.

Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney told an off-camera session with reporters Tuesday the Trump administration was seeking a mass reorganization of Cabinet Departments and federal agencies and to make them run more efficiently.

"This is about good government," said Mulvaney, convincing reporters they will not get what he called the "knee jerk" promise "there will be fewer agencies" when the study and resulting reorganization is completed.

"There may be more [agencies]," he said, "but they will be smaller."

Mulvaney also promised input on the reorganization would "not just come from right-wing think tanks."

So, Newsmax asked White House press secretary Sean Spicer on Thursday, is the Trump administration getting any criticism for Mulvaney's talk of reorganization from small government conservatives?

"As the director noted, you have a government that, in large part, has never been reorganized," Spicer told us, "it's just been added to. And when you look at the different number of agencies and programs that flow throughout the government, in some cases to do, the very same thing, and are housed in a variety of agencies throughout the government, the question that you have to ask yourself is not only is the taxpayer getting the best bang for their buck, but are the people that those services are intended to be providing getting the best services?"

The president's top spokesman added Mulvaney's effort, "at the president's direction, to really look at how government is organized and operating I think is a very significant step."

As to criticism coming from the right, Spicer was skeptical.

Quoting Mulvaney, he said: "One of the points that he noted is that this is something that should unite conservatives and liberals, and Republicans and Democrats – good government and effective, efficient government is something that really doesn't have an ideological home.

"I think it's something that we all can agree on – that the more that we can effectively deliver for the American citizen and deliver for the American taxpayer effective and efficient government is something that we should all probably be in line with."

Several old Washington hands say the talk from Mulvaney and Spicer of "good government" and "effective government" is familiar.

During Bill Clinton's first term, Vice President Al Gore headed a commission to "reinvent government" that was criticized by conservatives for not closing a single government agency. In the early 1970's, President Nixon unsuccessfully tried to create three "super secretaries" to each oversee the combined work of several Cabinet departments under them. The plan was abandoned in 1973.

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

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Is the Trump administration shifting away from the vision of smaller government candidate Donald Trump and the Republican platform championed in the 2016 campaign?
small government, policy shift, ideology, budget
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2017-58-13
Thursday, 13 Apr 2017 10:58 PM
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