Oh, SNAP! House Tea-Publicans pass farm bill without any food stamps funding


Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

It was amatuer hour in the House today as Tea-Publicans, who cannot conceal their contempt for the working poor who depend on food stamps for their day-to-day survival, stripped the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) aka food stamps provisions out of the "farm bill," moving the bill even further to the right than the punitive bill that failed to pass the Congress last month when Tea-Publicans objected that it was not punitive enough against the working poor. Farm Bill passes House without food stamp funds:

House Republicans successfully passed a Farm Bill Thursday by splitting
apart funding for food stamps from federal agricultural policy[.]

Lawmakers voted 216 to 208 make changes to federal agricultural
policy and conservation programs and end direct subsidy payments to
farmers. But the measure says nothing about funding for the Supplemental
Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps
, which historically constitutes about 80 percent of the funding in a Farm Bill.

No House Democrat voted for the measure. Twelve Republicans also
opposed it. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) voted in favor of it,
even though speakers traditionally don’t vote.

The vote made clear that Republicans intend to make significant
reductions in food stamp money
and handed Republican leaders a
much-needed [pyrrhic] victory three weeks after conservative lawmakers and rural
state Democrats revolted and blocked the original version of the bill
that included food stamp money.

Several Democratic lawmakers rose in opposition to the plan early
Thursday as debate began, with several of them repeatedly saying that
the new bill “hurts the children of America” or “increases hunger in

* * *

Republicans attempted to tamp down the opposition by assuring
Democrats that they will hold votes on a separate measure dealing with
food stamp funding later in the month.

I bet they will. Perhaps Ebeneezer Scrooge will testify in favor of the GOP bill containing draconian cuts to SNAP. "Are there no prisons?" "And the Union workhouses. Are they still in operation?" "Those who are badly off must go there." Many can't go there; and many would rather die. "If they would rather die, they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population."

Current federal farm and food aid policy expires on Sept. 30 and
failure to pass a new bill in time means American farmers will fall back
to a 1949 law governing the industry, which could lead to steep price
increases on items such as milk.

* * *

House Republican leaders rushed late Wednesday to set up Thursday’s
vote after securing sufficient support among rank-and-file members. The
decision comes as many rural-state Republicans are facing pressure from
constituents [agribusiness] for so far failing to approve the legislation.

The White House said late Wednesday that President Obama would veto
any Farm Bill that fails to comprehensively address federal farm and
food aid policy.

The Senate farm bill includes funding for food stamps, so when these bills go to conference committee, today's "I hate poor people on food stamps" symbolic vote by Tea-Publicans means little, other than to expose their inhumanity and contempt for the working poor. Any farm bill that emerges out of the conference committee is going to include the funding for food stamps, so they are going to have to vote for it in the end.

House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer called the new Farm Bill “a bill to nowhere,” and said that
Senate Democrats would reject the House version even if it passes. “This
dead-on-arrival messaging bill only seeks to accomplish one objective:
to make it appear that Republicans are moving forward with important
legislation even while they continue to struggle at governing,” Hoyer

Conservative organizations closely aligned with dozens of House Republicans also cast doubt on the new bill.

The Club for Growth said that while it supports splitting up farm and
food policy, the new farm-only bill “is still loaded down with
market-distorting giveaways to special interests with no path
established to remove the government’s involvement in the agriculture
industry.” The group also faulted House GOP leaders for proceeding with
what it calls a “rope-a-dope exercise” that likely will result in House
and Senate negotiators restoring commodity and food stamp funding
opposed by Republicans.

Heritage Action said the new bill would wrongly make permanent
several programs, including aid to sugar producers that would drive up
costs for customers and taxpayers.

Way to go TanMan, you managed to even piss off the right-wing PACs with your utter incompetence as Weeper of the House. How does this loser still have the gavel?

The latest USDA report shows that 47.8 million Americans, which make up 15 percent of the country, are receiving food stamp benefits. Recipients tend to live in poor states, which are mostly "red states." These Tea-Publicans are voting against their own constituents. If poor people ever actually turned out to vote in November, they could be the margin of victory to kick these Tea-Publicans out of office. They really ought to think about that.

2012 participation in SNAP, as a percent of total state population (h/t Washington Post)

key colors


Screenshot from 2013-07-11 14:34:41