Measure to Cut Food Stamps “A Monumental Waste of Time”

Yesterday, the Republican-controlled House voted 217 to 210 to cut $40 billion from the food stamp program over the next 10 years. A Census Bureau report released earlier in the week “found that the program had kept about four million people above the poverty level and had prevented millions more from sinking further into poverty,” according to the Times. Democratic leaders said that the cuts would plunge millions of Americans into poverty. Rep. Jackie Speier, a Democrat from California, criticized her Republican colleagues for cutting food aid to the poor while spending significant amounts of money on food when traveling:

One member was given $127.41 a day for food on his trip to Argentina. He probably had a fair amount of steak. Another member was given $3,588 for food and lodging during a six-day trip to Russia. He probably drank a fair amount of vodka and probably even had some caviar. That particular member has 21,000 food stamp recipients in his district. One of those people on food stamps could live a year on what this congressman spent on food and lodging for six days.

Other Democratic leaders called the measure “a monumental waste of time” because it has little chance of advancing in the Senate.

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