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The international affairs portion of the president’s FY2013 budget will likely generate concern among aid advocates over cuts to health and humanitarian assistance. With so many budget variables in play during an election year, it is difficult to predict an outcome, but international affairs spending will remain under pressure as policymakers search for ways to address budget deficits.
The president’s budget, released on February 13, sets total government-wide spending at $8.3 trillion. The international affairs budget, or 150 Account, constitutes 1.6 percent of total spending. At $56.2 billion, the request is $1.3 billion, or 2.4 percent, greater than last year’s appropriated level.
This budget brief analyzes the president’s 2013 budget request on the basis of initial summary documents released on February 13. The administration has not yet released detailed country and program documentation, but the summary documents are sufficient to assess the administration’s priorities for development.