If the House Agriculture Committee gets its way, we’ll see a massive $3.5 billion cut a year in a program that feeds 1 out of every 7 Americans.
By the time the cuts come full circle, $16 billion would have been eliminated from the Supplementary Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) and will definitely make it harder for those hit hardest by the weak economy to put food on their table.
It comes as no surprise that Republican conservatives are once again raising the flag to cut down on “wasteful” expenditures in the food stamp program. “The cuts can be done without hurting the needy. There’s a lot of room to cut food stamps,” says Rep. Tom Rooney (R-Florida).
Democrats vehemently oppose further cuts to the system, with Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Connecticut) summing up their position quite nicely. “Underfunding this critically important program when families temporarily rely on it to put food on the table in a tough economy is irresponsible and inhumane.”
It seems that the Republican Party is doing all it can to protect the interests of its constituents – wealthy lobbyists and upper-middle class Americans – at the expense of those who need government help the most. If the budget is tight, the first instinct of the GOP is to go cut down welfare and aid programs while blaming recipients for all the woes of the country.
This does not mean that the Democrats are saints either. Doling out cash and aid programs are short-term solutions to the problems of poverty and unemployment, but we cannot change the fact that fewer and fewer Americans are able to make enough money to be considered middle-class.
Our country became the superpower that it is today because of the toughness, ingenuity and intrepidness of the individual American, but Republicans have to wake up and realize that America’s growing poor need their help.
Simply slapping their wrists and telling them to get a job just won’t work when they’re starving on the streets.