Back in January, rumors began circulating that soon-to-be President Donald Trump would be casting a leery, spendthrift eye over the budgets for both the National Endowment For The Arts and the National Endowment For The Humanities, hoping to balance the federal checkbook by defunding the whopping 0.003 percent of national spending that their annual budgets make up. Now, The New York Times reports that NEA chair Jane Chu told her staffers today that Trump plans to go forward tomorrow with his plans to defund the organizations, which provide federal funding and grants for artists and museums, as well as providing much of the money to state programs that perform similar services on a local level.
Trump is expected to release his proposed federal budget early tomorrow morning, laying out his administration’s priorities for America, which include completely removing the federal budgets for both groups. (We have to assume wall supplies and golf trips will stay put on the list.) That budget is subject to congressional approval, though, which means that the death of the NEA and the NEH—created in 1965 by Lyndon B. Johnson, on the grounds that “advanced civilizations” require a valuation of the arts—isn’t a done deal. (Apropos of nothing, here’s a reminder of one of the many easy ways there are to contact your personal senator and representative and let them know about any issues that happen to currently be bugging you in our ongoing facsimile of an advanced civilization.)