When Barack Obama was president, the number of Americans on food stamps increased drastically. Under President Donald Trump–not surprisingly–that number has significantly decreased.
When Obama entered office in 2009, about 33 million Americans were enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or “SNAP”, most commonly known as food stamps. By 2013, that number had shot up to 48 million
That’s a jump of more than 48 percent!
But President Trump has shifted those numbers in the opposite direction. According to data from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), enrollment in the SNAP program has dropped by 3,899,257.
This means food stamp use is lower than it’s been in ten years!
This is important for many reasons, not the least of which is the fact that this program costs $5 billion a month.
That’s $60 billion a year, all at taxpayers’ expense.
Many attribute this decrease to states passing new work or school requirements to receive public assistance.
But Trump has taken such reforms a step further: His administration has proposed making it harder for both legal immigrants and the children of illegal aliens to receive assistance.
“A central theme of the Trump administration has been to expand prosperity for all Americans, which includes helping people lift themselves out of pervasive poverty,” said Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue in November, when the Trump administration first floated these new rules. Perdue also said these proposals could restore “the dignity of work to a sizable segment of our population, while it’s also respectful of the taxpayers who fund the program.”
“A recent study showed that food stamp usage among people who recently immigrated to the United States in the past five years has dropped by 10%, even though the rules have not yet been passed,” The Daily Signal reports. “A new survey from the nonpartisan policy group Children’s HealthWatch found that … SNAP enrollment among immigrant families in the U.S. less than five years is down about 10 percent,’ ABC News reported in November.”
The Signal also notes that about 9 million legal immigrants and “children born in the U.S. to people who entered illegally — are in the SNAP program.”
The Daily Signal also reports about what might be the most promising aspect of Trump’s food stamp reform yet:
And in his 2018 proposed budget, Trump offered a novel idea: Instead of giving needy people stamps they can redeem for food, why not just give them actual food?
The program would be called “America’s Harvest Box.” Perdue called it “a bold, innovative approach to providing nutritious food to people who need assistance feeding themselves and their families — and all of it is home-grown by American farmers and producers.”
“The USDA believes that state governments will be able to deliver this food at much less cost than SNAP recipients currently pay for food at retail stores — thus reducing the overall cost of the SNAP program by $129 billion over the next 10 years,” NPR reported. “This and other changes in the SNAP program, according to the Trump administration, will reduce the SNAP budget by $213 billion over those years — cutting the program by almost 30 percent.”
How about that? Giving people actual food instead of stamps would still help some in need and save American taxpayers a boatload of money.
Just another way Donald Trump is doing everything he can to Make American Great Again.
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