The Trump administration wants to cut the Energy Department's renewable and energy efficiency program by nearly 70%, according to a draft agency budget document viewed by Axios.

Why it matters: Congress is probably not going to grant such deep cuts, but the numbers are nonetheless important for two reasons: 1) It shows how extreme the administration wants to go with its budget cuts in policy areas its rhetoric hasn't supported. 2) It puts a low marker down to negotiate with Congress. The lower the starting point, the lower the ultimate numbers could well end up.

Expand chart
Data: Draft of Energy Department budget; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon / Axios

For the record: An Energy Department spokesperson didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

What we're hearing: Most environmental groups and other left-leaning advocacy groups have focused on the deep budget cuts Trump wants for the Environmental Protection Agency, but some organizations want to ensure the broader umbrella of Democratic and environmental interests also defends the clean-energy investments at the Energy Department.

"The clean energy and climate communities need to defend energy innovation with the same vigor they're defending environmental protections," said Josh Freed, vice president for clean energy at Third Way, a center-left think tank.

What's next: The Trump administration has said it will send its budget request for fiscal year 2018 to Congress next week. These proposed cuts are part of a broader effort across the administration to make deep spending reductions, including in the Energy Department's offices of nuclear and fossil-fuel energies.

Go deeper

1 hour ago - Podcasts

Facebook boycott organizers share details on their Zuckerberg meeting

Facebook is in the midst of the largest ad boycott in its history, with nearly 1,000 brands having stopped paid advertising in July because they feel Facebook hasn't done enough to remove hate speech from its namesake app and Instagram.

Axios Re:Cap spoke with the boycott's four main organizers, who met on Tuesday with CEO Mark Zuckerberg and other top Facebook executives, to learn why they organized the boycott, what they took from the meeting, and what comes next.

Boycott organizers slam Facebook following tense virtual meeting

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Civil rights leaders blasted Facebook's top executives shortly after speaking with them on Tuesday, saying that the tech giant's leaders "failed to meet the moment" and were "more interested in having a dialogue than producing outcomes."

Why it matters: The likely fallout from the meeting is that the growing boycott of Facebook's advertising platform, which has reached nearly 1000 companies in less than a month, will extend longer than previously anticipated, deepening Facebook's public relations nightmare.

Steve Scalise PAC invites donors to fundraiser at Disney World

Photo: Kevin Lamarque-Pool/Getty Images

House Minority Whip Steve Scalise’s PAC is inviting lobbyists to attend a four-day “Summer Meeting” at Disney World's Polynesian Village in Florida, all but daring donors to swallow their concern about coronavirus and contribute $10,000 to his leadership PAC.

Why it matters: Scalise appears to be the first House lawmakers to host an in-person destination fundraiser since the severity of pandemic became clear. The invite for the “Summer Meeting” for the Scalise Leadership Fund, obtained by Axios, makes no mention of COVID-19.