NEH in the News
President Trump's proposed budget takes a cleaver to domestic programs, with many agencies taking percentage spending cuts in the double digits. But for dozens of smaller agencies and programs, the cut is 100%.
A deep fear came to pass for many artists, museums, and cultural organizations nationwide early Thursday morning when President Trump, in his first federal budget plan, proposed eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities.
“We are greatly saddened to learn of this proposal for elimination, as N.E.H. has made significant contributions to the public good,” said William D. Adams, chairman of the humanities endowment, in a statement. Mr. Adams made a point of noting endowment support for preservationist work in Kentucky, the home state of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and for theater work by veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — a clear overture to Republicans to remember that endowment grants do not only go to liberal elites.
The National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities are among the independent agencies earmarked for zero funding in the 2018 budget blueprint released Thursday by the Trump administration. The NEA and NEH are among 20 agencies the proposal targets for elimination of funding, along with the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the Institute for Museum and Library Services, to name a couple.
The budget goes after the frequent targets of the party's staunchest conservatives, eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts, legal aid for the poor, low-income heating assistance and the AmeriCorps national service program established by former President Bill Clinton.
President Donald Trump is unveiling a $1.15 trillion budget, a far-reaching overhaul of federal government spending that slashes a dozen departments to finance a significant increase in the military and make a down payment on a U.S.-Mexico border wall. The budget goes after the frequent targets of the party's staunchest conservatives, eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts, legal aid for the poor, low-income heating assistance and the AmeriCorps.
The White House released a preliminary budget outline Thursday that would slash the federal government’s role in protecting the environment, engaging in diplomacy, funding scientific research, aiding the arts and helping the poor, redirecting the money to bolster the military and homeland security.
The boost in security spending includes a $1.5 billion down payment on building a wall on the border with Mexico.
The blueprint calls for eliminating programs across the government, including the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities.
In his budget message to Congress Thursday, Mr. Trump said he wants to zero out funding for many long-standing federal programs “to move the nation toward fiscal responsibility” and to “redefine the proper role of the federal government.”
The NEA, an independent agency created by the federal government in 1965, received $148 million from the federal government in 2016. Mr. Trump also is proposing to eliminate federal funding for the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Making America “great” again does not apply to culture, philosophy, arts education, literature, or the preservation of the nation’s history, apparently. President Trump released a $1.1 trillion budget proposal on Thursday morning that realized some of the worst fears of artists, educators, and historians as it proposes completely defunding, among other agencies, the National Endowment of the Arts and the National Endowment of the Humanities.
The NEH and NEA have supported everything from the Library of America to archeological excavations of Jamestown to the promotion of arts education in schools, particularly in high-poverty neighborhoods.
NEH worked directly and with local agencies to support the preservation of American history and culture, funding projects such as the digitization of the Hellen Keller Archives and the preservation of aging wax cylinder recordings of Native American languages and song.
The NEH supports “humanities work in small towns all around the country,” Stephen Kidd, the executive director of the National Humanities Alliance, told HuffPost in January. Whether the organization is providing crucial funding to local historical societies preserving pockets of American history, ensuring students have access to decades of newspaper articles for research, or helping veterans cope with war trauma through literature, Kidd said, “there really aren’t other funders out there that are supporting that kind of work on that kind of scale.”
President Trump's first budget blueprint is calling for the elimination of federal funding to a host of arts and humanities programs, as the new administration seeks to redirect taxpayer dollars to defense.
The blueprint released by the White House “proposes to eliminate funding” for: the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which sends some money to PBS and National Public Radio.
Federal funding of arts programs, including money for public radio and television, has been the target of Republican administrations and congressional budget hawks for decades.