Discretionary spending funds a wide range of government programs
February 02, 2015

Discretionary spending results from annual appropriations legislation. The programs in this category of federal spending, representing about one third of the budget for 2014, are some of the most recognizable (other than individual benefit programs), and include national defense, veterans' assistance, the Congress, the White House, the Supreme Court, national parks, law enforcement, education, research and development, and investments in physical infrastructure. Defense takes up about half of the total discretionary spending budget.

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Peter G. Peterson Foundation Chart Pack:

The PGPF chart pack illustrates that budget-making involves many competing priorities, limited resources, and complex issues. In this set of charts, we aim to frame the financial condition and fiscal outlook of the U.S. government within a broad economic, political, and demographic context.
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