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Tag: Budget


FY16 State and Foreign Operations Appropriations

Blog Post

Policy wonks usually bemoan the lack of a functional budget and appropriations process. This year, however, CGD’s policy outreach team is (reluctantly) crossing its fingers for a continuing resolution—an outcome that seems increasingly likely with only eight legislative weeks before the end of the fiscal year. 

Dismantling US Leadership One Budget at a Time, Part 2

Blog Post

My earlier post on congressional funding for multilateral institutions betrayed little optimism about the Senate’s willingness to restore devastating funding cuts imposed by the House of Representatives. I had no idea.

The newly released Senate funding levels are just barely an improvement over the House’s draconian cuts, slashing the president’s multilateral budget in half. When cuts of 50 percent mark an improvement, you know you’re in trouble.

FY15 Budget Request Puts Heavy Emphasis on Initiatives

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President Obama launched the opening salvo in the FY2015 budget process with his recently released request, and while some of his foreign assistance proposals seem destined to go the way of the cutting room floor, you certainly can’t fault the request for having a specific point of view.

Shutdown Shenanigans

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I sat down to add to the growing pile of shutdown analyses (and diatribes) but then realized my former colleagues had already done it for me. Granted, Sarah Jane Staats and Connie Veillette wrote this blog back in 2011 on the eve of the last almost-shutdown but their concerns on what a shutdown means for development remain relevant.

FY14 State and Foreign Ops Appropriations: A Development Wonk’s Primer

Blog Post

This is a joint post with Beth Schwanke.

On Capitol Hill, this time of year is marked by hot, sticky weather and a mad scramble (or is it more of a leisurely stroll this year?) to advance the appropriations process before Members of Congress head back to their districts for the August recess. There’s little doubt that the current political and budget climate, complete with automatic sequestration cuts, is complicating this already herculean task.

Foreign Aid in Congress: Five Contradictions

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I was pleasantly surprised by the House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing last week on the FY2014 USAID and MCC budgets. I expected a remix of the partisan spats I watched two years ago. Instead, there was impressive congressional turnout plus serious questions and thorough answers. There was even some friendly competition between USAID and MCC. But five contradictions come up anytime foreign aid is on the Hill and the latest budget hearing was no exception.

Foreign Aid Remix: Yohannes and Shah Head Back to the Hill

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MCC CEO Daniel Yohannes and USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah are heading back to Capitol Hill Thursday to testify together before the House Foreign Affairs Committee. I expect Yohannes and Shah will sing different parts of the same tune: the United States is prepared to do more with less as it strives to fulfill the administration’s global development vision. But it should also be a remix of their joint hearing two years ago with questions on how Congress should prioritize among US development programs. Shah and Yohannes can hit some new high notes on how their agencies are being selective with aid dollars, sharing more aid data and doing better evaluation. They should also be clear about the differences between USAID and MCC. And let’s hope the committee members can avoid the low notes from two years ago when partisan spats (including some in Latin) marred what could have been an important development policy conversation between the executive branch and Congress.

Kerry on US Development Investments: Doing More with Less

Blog Post

The $52 billion FY2014 international affairs budget request is a small investment with big returns for the United States and the world, Secretary of State John Kerry said in congressional hearings last week.  The request is the same amount Congress allocated in FY2013 and a four percent cut from FY2012. Kerry told members of Congress that the State Department and USAID are prepared to do more with less.

It’s Halftime at the Global Fund

Blog Post

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria recently announced an ambitious goal of raising $15 billion in its fourth replenishment later this year, of which they hope the United States will contribute one-third ($5 billion, or $1.65 billion a year for three years).  So I was interested to see these two sentences tucked into the White House’s 2014 budget request: