House Slashes Money for Food Stamps
Bill would cut $40 billion over a decade, setting up fight in Senate
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Sep 19, 2013 6:22 PM CDT
From left, Rep. Lee Terry, R-Neb., House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., and Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, wait to speak with reporters following a strategy session at the Capitol Wednesday.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Newser) – House Republicans have laid down their marker in the fight over the nation's food-stamp program: They passed a bill tonight that would slash nearly $40 billion over 10 years, arguing that the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program is bloated and too-easily abused, reports the Hill. The vote was close, 217-210, without a single Democrat voting in favor. The CBO estimates that about 4 million Americans would lose benefits under the House's tougher restrictions, but the rules are still a long way from being put into place. Now comes the wrangling with the Senate, and Democrats there say they won't agree to the big House cuts.

Some of the dueling quotes:

  • Pro: Too many people "choose to abuse the system," says Eric Cantor, who has spearheaded the House plan, including the July split of the food-stamp program from the farm bill. “Frankly it’s wrong for hard-working middle-class Americans to pay for that." Adds Republican Tim Huelskamp of Kansas: The tougher rules mean “you can no longer sit on your couch … and expect the federal taxpayer to feed you.”
  • Con: “It’s a sad day in the people’s House when the leadership brings to the floor one of the most heartless bills I have ever seen,” said Democrat James McGovern of Massachusetts. “It's terrible policy trapped in a terrible process.” Democrat Jackie Speier of California used props including a cooked steak and a can of caviar to argue that lawmakers should instead cut their own travel perks, reports the Washington Post.

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Showing 3 of 407 comments
nati
Sep 26, 2013 10:33 PM CDT
they simply voted to slow down the increase rate of food stamp program but not the increase itself. read an article at reason.com: http://reason.com/archives/2013/09/23/gop-food-stamp-bill-will-increase-govern
NorCalHal
Sep 26, 2013 7:52 PM CDT
It's amazing how those that really need help will continue to get it and the biggest consequence will be the government workers will have to start doing their jobs and qualifying people better to eliminate the free loaders. Plus, in the past when services were cut a lot of people actually went out and found jobs in order to become self sufficient - although, that may be harder today with the current administration's record of job creation . What even happened to Hillary's "It takes a village" philosophy? Instead of expecting the government (local or federal) to provide for those in need, where are the families, the churches (but only for those of you who believe), the service organizations, the aid societies?
Fatfinger
Sep 20, 2013 7:11 PM CDT
over the last several years I have really begun to hate Republicans!