On February 4, the President submitted the Administration’s FY09 Budget request of $3.1 trillion. The FY09 Budget request calls for an overall 3.7% increase in discretionary spending. For the seventh consecutive year, the Administration requested an increase for the International Affairs Budget. The FY09 request of $39.5 billion represents an 8.5% increase over the total FY08 enacted International Affairs spending (including emergency funds) and a 16% increase over the FY08 base appropriation. The request increases the International Affairs Budget by $5.5 billion, but represents only 0.18% of the overall FY09 Budget request.
Putting this into perspective:
- The entire International Affairs Budget is a mere 1.3% of the total FY09 budget.
- The requested increase for the entire Defense Department is roughly equal to the entire FY08 International Affairs Budget.
- The International Affairs Budget represents only 6.6% of the “national security budget”, which includes defense and homeland security.
- Even with significant increases for the International Affairs Budget since 9/11, this year’s request is 6% less in real terms compared to the height of the Cold War.