House Republicans are preparing legislation that would slash $4 billion a year from the food stamps program — nearly double what they proposed they first proposed for the program in June.
The proposed cuts would be 10 times more than the $400 million food stamp cuts the Senate proposed in June.
The deeper cuts in the latest House proposal are meant to attract Republicans who rejected the June proposal, when food stamps funding was still part of the farm bill. After the farm bill failed, House GOP leaders split the food stamp portion into a separate bill then passed a farmer aid package in July.
Food stamps, formally called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, have been included in farm bills — and so has never had to survive a solo vote — since the 1970s.
The House proposal is expected to be taken up in September when Congress returns from its late-summer break.
Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., the senior Democrat on the House Agriculture Committee, said the GOP proposal was nothing more than a political Republican “messaging bill” that, even if it clears the House, will die in the Democratic Senate.
It’s “an effort to try and placate the extreme right wing of their party,” Peterson said. “Clearly they have no interest in compromise or actual legislating.”
“Through today’s action, the House majority has clearly shown they have no interest in getting a farm bill done,” he said. “The American people should be outraged.”