Rand Paul on Food Stamps: Reform the food stamp program now

Food stamps has been a trending topic since the latest Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) data was published Friday.  The number has been increasing since 2009 when President Barack Obama took office and spending has quadrupled in the last 10 years.

Kentucky Republican Senator and potential 2012 presidential candidate Rand Paul addressed the issue this past summer in the Senate when he talked about reforming the program because of the various wastes and fraudulent activities that have been perpetrated by some of its users.

“We do not have an endless supply of money.  I think that Americans would be just flabbergasted at the amount of money and some of these programs are duplicative so people getting food stamps for a meal are also getting a free lunch at school. Some of these programs were actually advertising for applicants,” stated the Kentucky Senator.

“In my hometown they advertised to try to promote to get people to come in and eat the free lunch during the summer time.  It’s not that we won’t help people, we just need to be conscious of how much money we have and can we help only those who cannot help themselves?”

The full speech can be viewed below.

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  1. Hunger in America: The Myth

    One should imbibe alarms about pervasive hunger skeptically.

    • Free school lunch kids waste 46% more food than regular price kids. How can poor kids be hungrier?
    • School lunch waste is about 30%. Where’s the hunger?
    • School lunch provides all the calories a kid needs; then poor kids go home and eat the food stamp pop, candy bars, take-and-bake pizza and donuts.
    • A family of 6 can get about $21,900 per year in food stamps, free school food and food bank food. A non-recipient family of 6 usually spends $11,500 per year on food.
    • A family of 6 can earn up to $55,000 and qualify for food stamps and Women, Infants and Children, WIC.
    • The poor are adding weight faster than the non-poor.
    • Arguments as to why the poor make bad choices with food stamps do not stand scrutiny.
    • The food stamp program this year costs $77 billion. Mr. Obama wants to add $9 billion to that. A healthy food list reform, along the lines of the WIC program, could cut spending in half; no recipient would go hungry and the nation’s deficit would be substantially reduced.
    • At least 57% of food stamp spending is for foods high in high fructose corn syrup, cholesterol, fat and sodium. Food stamps buy unhealthy food.
    • The USDA and the Obama Administration are aggressively expanding food stamps, free school lunch and after school supper.
    • The USDA rebuffed New York City’s request to drop soda pop from permissible food stamp purchases.

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