Former GOP Leader Sways Trump On Spending Bill, Report Says

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

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Robert Donachie Capitol Hill and Health Care Reporter
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President Donald Trump signed a $1 trillion spending bill in early May to keep the government solvent through September, but was reportedly incensed about the bill’s contents.

Trump publicly opposed the spending bill, primarily because it didn’t provide him with funding to move forward with some of his chief campaign promises, like building a wall along the southern U.S.-Mexico border. As a result, Trump was hesitant to sign the proposal, Axios reports.

To sway the president, White House chief of staff Reince Priebus reportedly made an impromptu phone call to former Speaker of the House John Boehner to try to convince the former Republican leader to speak with Trump.

Boehner proposed two arguments, trying to compel Trump to see the benefits of approving the spending proposal: first, the bill allowed Trump to get his desired increases in defense spending, and second, the last thing the Trump administration needed while trying to push health care and tax reform is for the government to shut down.

Prior to Trump’s alleged conversation with Boehner, the president was willing to let the government shut down. Fed up with the lengthy debate process over the budget in Congress, Trump tweeted, “Our country needs a good ‘shutdown’ in September to fix mess!”

The president is expected to release his proposal for the 2018 fiscal budget Tuesday, which will reportedly include large cuts to major entitlement programs. The budget is expected to save the government $1.7 trillion over the next decade through cuts to mandatory spending.

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