President Donald Trump released his fiscal year 18 budget proposal on Tuesday. Included in that proposal is a $7.4 billion cut in funding for the National Institutes of Health.
Benjamin Corb, director of public affairs for the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, has provided the following statement in response to the proposal:
President Donald Trump’s fiscal year 2018 budget, if enacted, would significantly damage the nation’s role as the global leader of research and innovation, and would roll back years of bipartisan support from Congress. The President’s budget request, which would cut the National Institutes of Health’s funding by 22 percent to $26.9 billion, would make funding new research grants a near impossibility. The National Science Foundation would also see a reduction its budget with the request calling for an 11 percent cut, bringing its budget down to $6.7 billion.
The president’s proposal brings NIH funding to a 17-year low, erasing not only the recent history of increases provided by Congress but also the budget growth of the late 1990s and early 2000s, at which time Congress doubled the NIH’s budget. The proposed budget for NSF will reverse the basic research agency’s growth to fiscal year 2007 levels. Overall, the president’s budget would bring total federal investments in scientific research spending to a 40-year low.
Further, the president’s budget, which cuts nondefense discretionary spending while significantly increasing defense spending eliminates the parity between defense and nondefense spending that has been a hallmark of America’s recent fiscal policy.
The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology rejects the president’s budget and looks forward to continuing to partner with congressional leaders committed to ensuring America remains a global leader in scientific research and innovation.