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Dole on Budget Bill--Hasn't Got a Prayer

January 06, 1987|United Press International

WASHINGTON — President Reagan's $1-trillion budget proposal doesn't have a prayer of winning congressional approval but it is a "starting point" for drawing up an alternative, Senate Republican leader Bob Dole said today.

Dole, the Administration's key leader in the Senate, said the White House "probably used some smoke and mirrors" in developing its fiscal 1988 proposal, "just as Congress does from time to time."

"I don't think the budget itself has a prayer," he said, appearing with Senate Democratic leader Robert C. Byrd of West Virginia on the "CBS Morning News" several hours before the 100th Congress began its first session.

'A Starting Point'

"I think it's a starting point," Dole added.

The $1.02-trillion budget, introduced Monday, would increase military spending and cut certain domestic programs in an effort to achieve the deficit-reduction goal specified in the Gramm-Rudman balanced budget law. (Stories, Page 6.)

Byrd, leader of the new Democratic majority in the Senate, called the President's spending plan a "one-step-forward-two-steps-back budget" and was especially critical of its proposed cuts in education spending.

"One of the important components of national defense--education--has suffered a cut in this budget," Byrd said, vowing to alter Reagan's proposal to ensure that the Pentagon shares in spending cuts.

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