| Trump budget plan pushes back deficit target

The White House will unveil a budget proposal that drops the Republicans’ long-term goal of eliminating the federal deficit over the next 10 years, US media said on Sunday.

The budget proposal, expected to be released on Monday, will instead target closing the deficit by 2035, the Washington Post reported, citing an internal summary.

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US President Donald Trump’s administration had sought to eliminate the fiscal gap over a decade, but the president has recently shown little interest in tackling growing government debt, the newspaper said.

The budget plan is expected to request $2bn in homeland security spending for the US-Mexico border wall, with the summary reportedly saying 645km of wall would be completed by the end of 2020.

“We will not be touching your Social Security or Medicare in Fiscal 2021 Budget,” Trump, who faces a re-election battle in November, tweeted on Saturday.

“Only the Democrats will destroy them by destroying our Country’s greatest ever Economy!” he added.

The proposed budget will go before Congress, which is not required to agree to the White House’s requests.

According to Bloomberg News, the $4.8 trillion plan includes $740.5bn for defence and a 5% cut in non-defence spending.

The budget deficit is projected to breach $1 trillion by the end of September, according to the Congressional Budget Office, while government debt is expected to represent 81% of US GDP.

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