On Thursday evening, after months of campaigning as the party of the middle class and the party that would “make life work for more people,” House Republicans voted to cut $40 billion from the food stamp program over the next 10 years. The bill has no chance of passing the Senate, and the White House has threatened to veto it, thus making the vote a “monumental waste of time,” as Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Stabenow (MI) put it.
Making cuts to programs that help the poor doesn’t look good for the GOP but today, it’s particularly painful for those in need. Over the past month, two reports have been published that demonstrate just how much of a problem hunger is in this country. First, the Department of Agriculture released its report on food insecurity which showed that 49 million Americans live in households that struggle to put food on the table. One week later, the Census Bureau reported that one in six Americans, or 47 million people, now live in poverty.
More than 200 Republicans voted to cut the food stamp program yesterday, even though many of their constituents are, in fact, food stamp recipients. In fact, among the 254 counties where food stamp recipients doubled during the recession, Mitt Romney won 213 of them in 2012, according to a Bloomberg News report.
On Friday, Democratic Congressman Jim McGovern (MA) joined NOW with Alex Wagner to discuss the House vote and the rise of hunger and poverty in America.