Senate turns back attempt by Paul to force budget debate

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Senate turns back attempt by Paul to force budget debate
FILE - In this April 18, 2018, file photo, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. On May 17, the Senate rejected an attempt by Paul to force a debate on sweeping budget cuts and federal deficits that are growing despite a strong economy. After last year’s tax cuts and a two-year agreement on agency budget levels, Republicans controlling Congress aren’t trying to pass a budget blueprint this year. There’s no appetite to cut popular programs in such a difficult political environment. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate has rejected an attempt by Sen. Rand Paul to force a debate on sweeping budget cuts and on federal deficits that are growing despite a strong economy.

After last year’s tax cuts and a two-year agreement on agency budget levels, Republicans controlling Congress aren’t trying to pass a budget blueprint this year. There’s no appetite to cut popular programs in such a difficult political environment.

Paul, a Republican from Kentucky, offered a budget with a draconian trillion worth of cuts over the coming decade, but he doesn’t describe where they would come from. Instead he calls on lawmakers to come up with “new efficiencies, consolidations, and other savings.”

The Senate voted 76-21 to reject Paul’s effort.