In non-surprising political pandering news, politicians have decided to “sacrifice” their comfortable well-fed lifestyle for a week to eat like those who receive SNAP benefits (which are essentially food stamps). Over two dozen have participated in the #SNAPChallenge on Twitter, in which they attempt to live off of $4.50 a day to represent the necessity of the program and shield it from cuts. The movement, organized by Rep. Barbara Lee, serves as an example of just one more phony political stunt from D.C.
#SNAPChallenge is clearly not meant to be a real conversation about SNAP benefits and how they should be modified. This is only a political façade put on to make others feel guilty. Does anyone who uses the government program feel relieved that their elected officials have played poor for a week? I doubt it.
Not only are they relentlessly tweeting their “pathetic” meals (since when were scrambled eggs, bread, and milk a bad breakfast?), they’re misleading people. Surprise, surprise, I know. They bemoan their $4.50 a day budget, ignoring the fact that the name SNAP benefits actually stands for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. That’s right: supplemental. I know politicians aren’t huge on reading legislation before it’s passed, but you’d think a title would be manageable. I guess not, so I’ll assist. “Supplemental: adding to furnish what is lacking or missing.” The program was designed to be an addition to other income.
In The Washington Post’s kickass “Fact Checker” article, Glenn Kessler points out that, according to the USDA, about 75% of SNAP recipients use their own money in addition to their benefits. Glenn also clears up the $4.50 a day propaganda. The $4.50 figure is for a single person, but families of four could receive up to $668 a month.
Does it honestly surprise anyone, though, that the federal government has a hard time budgeting? Or that they are not resourceful…at all? A quick Google search for budget eating pulled up this link. And this one. This one, too. Even the hashtag #SNAPChallenge brought me to this awesome FreedomWorks takedown of the challenge.
It is mind-boggling to me that some people think these political attempts at empathy are honorable. This stunt has made it clear that the bureaucrats don’t care about real, substantial discussions – only pandering and desperate attention seeking. But hey, who’s surprised?