Food costs are being projected to rise between 4 and 5 percent in the next year.† The GOP’s response?† It’s time to cut food stamps.
According to Politico, the Republican party wants the budget for SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assurance Program) to expand from $70 billion to $71 billion, a minuscule increase that will not even cover the rising costs of food.† Democrats, meanwhile, are hoping to set next year’s budget at $80 billion.
Republicans argue that any additional needs could be met by charity or church groups, despite the fact that many groups have already responded by saying they are stretched as is. And with one in five Americans already using food stamps, they’re about to get stretched even further.
Yet the greatest injustice in refusing to provide an adequate budget for the program, while at the same time letting America’s wealthiest and corporations out of contributing their fair share, is that unlike tax breaks, which so far have done nothing to stimulate the economy, SNAP, much like unemployment, provides direct economic stimulus even greater than the amount expended.
ď’This is clearly a moral issue,’ said Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.). ‘But itís also an economic issue. For every dollar in food stamp costs, you get $1.79 back.’ The money benefits grocers, ‘the truck driver who delivered the food, the warehouses that stored it, the plant that processed it and the farmer who produced the food,’ Audrey Rowe, administrator of the Agriculture Departmentís Food and Nutrition Service, told a congressional committee in July.”
Refusing to provide enough aid to ensure people don’t go hungry, while at the same time putting up another roadblock to reviving the economy?† That sounds like a GOP platform for sure.
Photo credit: wikimedia commons