Editor’s note: The original post for this story made mention of Sesame Street in relation to the pending White House budget cuts. HBO now funds Sesame Street.
The White House budget office has reportedly drafted a list of American programs that President Donald Trump could cut to put a dent in domestic spending, including the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
The New York Times reports that now that Budget Director Mick Mulvaney has been confirmed, it’s on. And groups and organizations such as AmeriCorps and the National Endowments for the Arts and the Humanities, among others, are being considered for elimination or significant cutbacks.
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting was created in 1967 by an act of Congress and funded by the federal government to promote and help support public broadcasting, including PBS and National Public Radio, although it is a private nonprofit.
The National Endowment for the Arts was authorized in 1965, and according to the Los Angeles Times, NEA funding now reaches every state, every congressional district and even most counties—rural and urban—in the United States.
The Times reports that most of the nine programs targeted in the cuts cost less than $500 million annually, a drop in the bucket for a government projected to spend about $4 trillion in 2017, but these organizations have long been a target for conservative budget cuts as a supposed misuse of tax dollars.
Steve Bell, a former staff director of the Senate Budget Committee who is now with the Bipartisan Policy Center, told the Times that cutting these programs wouldn’t really put a dent in the deficit.
“It’s sad in a way because those programs aren’t causing the deficit,” Bell said. “These programs don’t amount to a hill of beans.”
And though New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie recently came to the White House to discuss his state’s (and the nation’s) heroin and prescription-pill epidemic, the list includes the White House’s Office of National Drug Control Policy, which dispenses grants to reduce drug use.
It looks like Trump’s priorities are a “strong military.”
Funding for the current fiscal year is set to expire April 28. The administration is expected to make a supplemental request before then for money to go to the military—and possibly a wall on the Mexican border.