Washington Update: Week of May 15

May 16, 2017
Washington Update

Budget & Appropriations

  • With fiscal year 2017 appropriations finalized, Congress now turns to the fiscal year 2018 budget and appropriations process.
  • The Trump administration is expected to release its fiscal year 2018 budget proposal Tuesday, May 23. The House is holding off until the release of the president's budget to mark up the fiscal year 2018 budget resolution including instructions for reconciliation.
  • The Senate is not looking to pass a budget resolution until after they have completed their health care bill. While the fiscal year 2017 budget season ended on a high note, we have our work cut out for us for the 2018 cycle. These budget proposals are expected to include deep cuts to both domestic and international non-discretionary and mandatory spending. 


  • We are still urging members of Congress to co-sponsor the BRIDGE Act (H.R. 496). As of right now there are 25 co-sponsors: 12 Republicans and 13 Democrats.

American Health Care Act

  • Right now, the Senate is working on developing a health care bill similar to the American Health Care Act (AHCA) passed in the House.
  • Instead of starting from scratch, the Senate is looking to amend the House bill. There is a real danger that the Senate version will claim to make small improvements to pre-existing conditions and age rating, but will still include draconian cuts to Medicaid.
  • Right now, we think that there are two possible deadlines Republicans have set for when they want to pass the Senate bill: Before the July 4 recess or before the August recess.
  • The Congressional Budget Office is expected to release its estimate of how much the AHCA will cost taxpayers by Monday, May 22. Contrary to previous processes, the House passed the AHCA without knowing the exact cost of the bill. 

Act Now!

Right now, the Senate is working on language for a health care bill that would cut billions of dollars in Medicaid and put low-income and vulnerable people at risk, of again, having to make the terrible choice between purchasing food or medicine. Call your senators (800-826-3688) and urge them to reject the American Health Care Act and any cuts to Medicaid.

Every senator needs to hear from their constituents, but these six U.S. senators will be key in this process. If you live in any of the following states, we especially need you to make calls urging them to protect Medicaid and reject the American Health Care Act:

Arizona: Sen. Jeff Flake
Alaska: Sen. Lisa Murkowski
Louisiana: Sen. Bill Cassidy
Maine: Sen. Susan Collins
Ohio: Sen. Rob Portman
Pennsylvania: Sen. Pat Toomey 

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from our Resource Library

For Education

  • The Nourishing Effect

    Hunger and food insecurity add at least $160 billion a year to U.S. healthcare costs.

  • The Impacts of Proposed Fiscal Year 2018 Budget Cuts on the Latino Community

    To end hunger and poverty in the United States by 2030, our country needs to support a budget that improves the lives of men, women, and children. Unfortunately, the Trump administration and Congress are proposing dramatic cuts to programs that promote economic opportunity or provide food...

  • The Dream Act of 2017 (S. 1615 & H.R. 3440)


    The United States is a nation of immigrants. Throughout its history, people have moved here from all over the world and have contributed to their communities and our national life. Today, as in the past, immigrants are also creating prosperity for this nation. 


For Faith

  • The Bible on Health as a Hunger Issue

    A brief examination of the biblical approach to health as a hunger issue.

    Includes an introduction to the issue, a Scriptural reflection, practical actions you can take, and a prayer.

  • Bread Newsletter January 2016

    In this issue: Another Great Year for Bread; Catholics Begin Observance of Holy Year of Mercy; Serving on ‘God’s Wave Length’ for 39 Years; and more.

  • Interfaith Religious Leaders’ Pledge to End Hunger

    A wide array of the nation’s faith leaders have come together on the eve of Pope Francis’ arrival in the United States to commit ourselves to encourage our communities to work for the end of hunger by 2030 and, toward that end, for a shift in U.S. national priorities.

    We are deeply pleased...

For Advocacy

  • Grassroots Advocacy Toolkit

    A set of how-to sheets for carrying out advocacy and fact sheets on the current issues Bread for the World is working on.

    For new and current Bread grassroots hunger activists.

    Ideal as a starter toolkit for new Bread activists or as a set of updates for current activists.


  • The State of Black Poverty: A Pan-African Millennial Perspective on Ending Hunger by 2030

    Over the past year and a half, about two-dozen young adults from the United States and countries in Africa and the Caribbean, have gathered virtually and in person to reflect on the effects of hunger and poverty in black communities. The working group has been considering socio-political and...

  • Fact Sheet: The Hunger-Medicaid Connection

    Congress is considering proposals that would jeopardize healthcare coverage for millions of poor and near-poor adults and children. 

    Legislation under consideration in the House and Senate would gut...