Community Issues

Trump Reverses Position on Special Olympics Funding

President says organization will be funded, after days of backlash.


President Trump says his administration is reversing course, and will not cut $18 million in federal funding for the Special Olympics.

The change comes after Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was widely criticized for defending the cuts, while testifying about the U.S. Department of Education's proposed budget in front of a House subcommittee

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"The Special Olympics will be funded, I just told my people," Trump told reporters outside the White House on Thursday.

Pres. Trump said Special Olympics will be fully funded, reversing administration's previous position.

Earlier this week, DeVos said difficult decisions had to be made and that the budget demonstrated "fiscal discipline." According to the Washington Post, the Trump administration proposed reducing the entire Education Department's education budget by as much as 12 percent.

"I am pleased and grateful the president and I see eye-to-eye on this issue, and that he has decided to fund our Special Olympics grant. This is funding I have fought for behind-the-scenes over the last several years," DeVos said, following the president's announcement.

Following the secretary's appearance on Tuesday, there was significant backlash to the proposed cuts, which included prominent athletes and celebrities expressing support for the Special Olympics. Founded in 1968, the organization works to provide athletic and competitive experiences for children and adults living with disabilities.

Democrats were more vocal in opposing the cuts to the Special Olympics, but even the top Republican on the panel, Rep. Tom Cole (OK), said some proposed spending cuts were "somewhat shortsighted."

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