No Cuts for Arts, Humanities Endowments in Omnibus Spending Bill

No Cuts for Arts, Humanities Endowments in Omnibus Spending Bill

The omnibus spending bill that completes the budget deal Congress passed late last year has not a sliver of cuts for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) or the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Heritage Foundation reports.

According to Laura Trueman, the Director of Strategic Operations at the Heritage Foundation, NEA and NEH both received no reduction in funding in this omnibus deal cut by House Appropriations Committee chairman Rep. Hal Rogers (R-KY) and Senate Appropriations Committee chairwoman Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD).

Just like before this deal, the NEA and the NEH will each receive $146 million in funding for fiscal year 2014.

A little over a year ago, Republicans – specifically Mitt Romney, the 2012 GOP nominee – were saying they would “eliminate” NEH and NEA. In a follow-up, the Romney campaign said Romney’s “eliminate” comments meant that each agency would see half its budget slashed. 

Instead of doing that, now Rogers and House Budget Committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) – who was Romney’s vice presidential running mate in 2012 and whose budget deal with Senate Budget Committee chairwoman Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) set the stage for this omnibus spending bill – are embracing full NEH and NEA funding by championing this and the previous budget bills.

ForAmerica chairman Brent Bozell, a longtime leader in the conservative movement, said in a Tuesday evening statement that this is happening because the GOP establishment is actually less honorable than the Democrats.

“The heart and soul of the Republican Party in the grassroots is strong, courageous, and principled,” Bozell said. 

I have never seen a bigger divide between the GOP leadership and grassroots conservatives, rank-and-file Republicans and Tea Party supporters. With this budget, the leadership of the Republican Party again demonstrates that when it comes to fiscal discipline and responsibility they continue to be AWOL. By passing this budget, the leadership of the Republican Party is only aiding and abetting the future bankruptcy of America.

With regard to hypocrisy on the part of Republicans in GOP leadership, Bozell said at least the Democrats do what they say they will do – even if it is economically destructive.

“All the programs the GOP leadership has repeatedly promised to end – Obamacare, taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood, public broadcasting and others – are still being funded. So what’s the difference between Boehner and Pelosi and McConnell and Reid?,” Bozell asked. “Answer: The Democratic leadership honors its promises. Republican leaders have abandoned theirs.”

The Heritage Foundation has compiled a list of other wasteful spending contained throughout the omnibus bill. Meanwhile, the Ryan-Rogers-Murray-Mikulski plan cuts pensions for more than 90 percent of veterans of the United States military – while ultimately increasing the national deficit by at least $15.5 billion, and increasing spending.