Russell Vought, a former senior Trump Administration official, has called on congressional Republicans to leave entitlements intact and focus instead on eliminating “woke” programs to reduce spending.
The GOP takeover of the House of Representatives has led to speculation about a possible debt ceiling standoff that Republicans could use to extract cuts to programs like Social Security and Medicaid. Vought, however, argues that Republicans should leave those programs unscathed while using their leverage to gut the federal government’s left-wing social programs, Rolling Stone reports.
Vought’s alleged efforts — which, per Rolling Stone, include “sprinting around Washington” attempting to gather recruits for a crusade against wokeness — have not gone unnoticed, according to reports.
Not true. You need discretionary and mandatory, but you do not need Social Security and Medicare benefit cuts to balance in ten years. Stop with the fiscal wars to nowhere.
— Russ Vought (@russvought) January 27, 2023
Republican Rep. Ralph Norman of South Carolina claims to have met with Vought and agrees with him on the necessity of cutting these policies from the budget, the outlet reported. (RELATED: Trump Says GOP Should Not Cut Social Security As Part Of Spending Deal)
“We need to cut wokeness out,” Norman said, according to Rolling Stone, “Our office is going to be looking at the dollars that go into wokeness — whether it’s in the military, whether it’s in discretionary money.”
The Rolling Stone report claims that Vought has met with Republican lawmakers in both the House and the Senate to make his case.
Vought’s outlines these goals in a 2023 budget proposal titled “A Commitment to End Woke and Weaponized Government,” which was written by the Center for Renewing America, a right-populist group Vought helms.
The proposal would cut funding from offices in the National Institute of Health that are “infused with critical race theory and gender theory.” It would also slash the budget of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which the document accuses of contaminating “federal spending with far-left identity politics.”