After Proposing Cut, Trump Now Seeks Funding For Special Olympics
President Donald Trump is attempting to make good on his promise to continue providing federal funding for Special Olympics.
Trump sent an amended budget proposal to Congress this week, which includes money for Special Olympics for the next fiscal year beginning in October.
“Today, I officially updated my budget to include $18 million for our GREAT @SpecialOlympics, whose athletes inspire us and make our Nation so PROUD!” Trump tweeted.
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The president’s initial budget request, which was unveiled in March, slashed all $17.6 million in federal funding from Special Olympics. Trump’s Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos vehemently defended the cut during multiple appearances before lawmakers on Capitol Hill.
“We had to make some difficult decisions with this budget,” DeVos said at the time, repeatedly highlighting that Special Olympics receives significant support from private donors.
“The Special Olympics will be funded. I just told my people, I want to fund the Special Olympics and I just authorized a funding of the Special Olympics,” Trump said in late March after DeVos spent three days justifying the cut. “I’ve been to the Special Olympics. I think it’s incredible and I just authorized a funding. I heard about it this morning. I have overridden my people. We’re funding the Special Olympics.”
Despite Trump’s pledge, however, federal appropriations are up to Congress and lawmakers from both parties had shown no appetite for ending spending on Special Olympics. Trump had proposed wiping out the line item in his previous budget proposals, but Congress consistently rejected the plan.
Now, with the amended proposal, the president is formally moving to take the cut off the table.
Special Olympics said that the federal funding it receives supports programing promoting social inclusion in 6,500 schools nationwide, not the organization’s sporting events.