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Contact: Ed Walz
Phone: (202) 657-0685

New Analysis Shows Obama Budget Continues to Invest in America’s Children

Tax Policy

Ed Walz
(202) 657-0685 (office)

Washington – Following the release of President Obama’s fiscal year 2013 budget, First Focus released a detailed analysis of the proposal’s investment in America’s children. The analysis confirms that the President’s budget makes children a priority through solid investments in discretionary education, housing, early childhood, and nutrition programs, and important new investments in initiatives like juvenile justice.

“President Obama’s budgets have consistently invested in kids,” said Bruce Lesley, president of First Focus. “And we applaud the President for his sustained commitment to making America’s children a national priority by increasing the share of federal spending on kids, even as his budget seeks to reduce the overall federal deficit.”

Compared to federal fiscal year 2012 appropriations, the President’s budget invests an additional $1.4 billion (1.8 percent) in children overall. The budget allocates 6.7 percent of total discretionary spending to children’s initiatives (a 10.2 percent increase from 2009), the largest share since First Focus began budget tracking. The First Focus analysis highlights specific investments including:

  • $670 million, (a 1.7 percent increase) for education;
  • $470 million (a 6.9 percent increase) for child nutrition;
  • $50 million (a significant 18.0 percent increase) for kids safety and juvenile justice programs;
  • $430 million (a 3.9 percent increase) for early childhood education; and,
  • $190 million (a 1.8 percent increase) in housing initiatives for children.

First Focus is concerned about health care cuts to the Children’s Health Insurance Program, and will complete further analysis of this and other mandatory programs in the President’s budget. Fact sheets on children’s health, child nutrition, education, early learning, child welfare, family economics, and housing will be released as the Administration releases additional details about the budget proposal.

“With child poverty at a twenty-year high, the federal budget should put children first,” said Lesley in his statement. “Congress should back up the kid friendly rhetoric of campaign season by supporting the investments in kids embodied in the President’s budget.”

Download the First Focus analysis here.


First Focus is a bipartisan advocacy organization dedicated to making children and families a priority in federal policy and budget decisions. For more information, visit