Upcoming Cuts to SNAP Will Result in Roughly 900,000 Veterans Having Less for Food

ramenI’m sure by now many of you have heard about the upcoming cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (aka SNAP), often called “food stamps,” that are about to take effect this coming Friday, November 1.  Well, technically it’s not a “cut” as much as it is a loss of additional funds the program had been receiving since the passage of the 2009 stimulus bill.

And according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, these cuts will impact roughly 900,000 of our veterans.

CBPP writes:

“Nationwide, in any given month, a total of 900,000 veterans nationwide lived in households that relied on SNAP to provide food for their families in 2011.”

Meaning that come Friday, those veterans (just like everyone else on SNAP) will experience a decrease in their benefits.

How much of a decrease?  Well, the CBPP estimates it will mean a reduction of approximately anywhere from $36 per month for a family of four to $11 per month for a single person.  What they roughly estimate is if we factor in 3 meals per day, it will give an individual $4.20 per day to eat on.  That’s not per meal, that’s per day.  

These cuts will especially impact our veterans, as the unemployment rate for recent veterans (2001-present) currently sits well above the national average at 10.1%.

And if any of this disgusts you, it gets worse.  Around the same time these reductions are set to take place, the House has a proposal on the table that would cut the program by another $39 billion over the next decade.  What that breaks down to is just about 3 million people per year, every year, being denied benefits through SNAP.

Considering how the CBPP claims that 80% of those on SNAP live below the poverty line, how can this be seen as anything other than a direct attack on the poor?

I mean, could you imagine Republicans supporting a $39 billion tax hike on the rich?  Hell, they’d probably shut down our government again just to try to block that.  Or could you imagine Republicans approving a cut of $39 billion in oil subsidies we’ve been handing over to huge oil companies?  You know, the same ones that are earning record profits.

But for Republicans, it’s perfectly acceptable to cut programs which are designed to give aid the poor and help hundreds of thousands of our veterans buy food.

Yes, we have a deficit problem.  Yes, we have a national debt problem.  But guess what?  The poor didn’t create it.

Two unfunded wars, huge growth in our defense spending, massive tax cuts and unethical behavior on Wall Street are the main culprits behind much of our national debt.

Sure, programs like Social Security and Medicare eventually must be dealt with to elongate their sustainability.  And yes, some programs that help the poor and middle class will face cuts.  But it’s reprehensible to me that whenever Republicans talk about “deficit reduction,” they hope to achieve their goals by placing the burden of those cuts squarely on the backs of the poor and middle class.

Meanwhile, any mention of asking the wealthy to pay a higher tax rate (or close tax loopholes many use to pay lower tax rates than most middle class Americans) is quickly dismissed by practically every member of the Republican party.

So the next time some conservative starts harping on about “supporting our troops,” please remind them of the billions in cuts Republicans are pushing for that would remove food from the households of our veterans.  “Supporting” them only while they’re at war and then cutting off support once they return home is not only unethical, it’s flat-out un-American.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • Elaine Steskal

    How about cuts to our elected officials salaries and benefits that WE the taxpayer pays for. GREED is nothing new for them

  • Karen

    Honey it happened last month, Not sure how you researched, obviously not by talking to any of us who live on them. Next month here in Indiana they are paying half the old pay date and half later in the month so we can hopefully be fooled when they change in Dec. to the later date and we all go without food until from the 1st until the middle. If it was possible to live on the little we get we would just save a little, but since it isn’t possible to eat on that little there will be a whole lot of hungry kids the first two weeks of December. 🙁

  • Bert Rutherford

    See, I’m confused about a couple of things:
    “What they roughly estimate is if we factor in 3 meals per day, it will give an individual $4.20 per day to eat on. That’s not per meal, that’s per day” What difference does it matter how many meals per day you’re eating if it’s a per day amount? That makes no sense.

    We calculated per day for my neighbor who gets food stamps and she gets $5.788 per day.

    It does no good to spout facts if they’re not correct.

    • Catherine R Brickell

      Different people get different amounts – it’s almost entirely random and up to the case worker. Besides, $5.79 is nothing to write home about.

  • Dena Trupiano

    Food stamps are based on income. They are not meant to be the sole source for your money for food. For some families it off-sets some bills, but this is rather stupid. Say a single mother of 2 gets $350 a month in food stamps which is too much so she can’t use them all, but she doesn’t have money to pay her utilities or rent. It’s rather complicated. Right now I’m fighting with FSD b/c I’m on SSDI and cannot get to the office for an interview, and I tried for 1.5 hours last monday when I had a scheduled phone interview. I’ve left messages numerous times with no call back. If I cannot get things resolved today, I will lose my benefits and also run the risk of losing my phone lifeline benefits. They have all the power and the control and I can do nothing. I’ve done everything they’ve requested, but I still am unable to reach anyone. All this stress has just put me into a flare causing more pain. I’ll wager if I had a kid I wouldn’t be going through this mess. And THAT angers me!

    • Troy Preuss

      Wrongo Dena a Mother with 2 children would get at the most 200 Bucks in food stamps. over half of the folks on SNAP work, but after they pay their bills can’t get food, that is the problem. The Republicans Cut Snap, but are unwilling to give these folks a living wage to raise themselves out of poverty, so they dont need assistance. The Republicans think The Churches will pick up the slack. But they can’t,.

      • Dena Trupiano

        I’m NOT wrong b/c a close friend of mine is who I was referring to. Yes, she was unemployed at the time, not getting any other welfare other than insurance for the 2 kids, but she was getting $350 a month in food stamps for 2 kids. I live in MO. I also have a neighbor who is working only part-time but she gets at least $200 a month just for herself. She has no children. Explain that to me.

  • Sherri G

    Divorced mom with 3 of us right now. I’m on SSD due to drunk driver MVA and DD is on SSI due to Autism Spectrum Disorder. My son is 17 attending college and CANT get a job because EVERYONE hires at 18+ now. We were getting $70/month, then DD SSI was recalculated and because of a $75 increase, we were dropped to $49. With the new cuts, we are now down to $20/month in SNAP benefits. What’s the point? That helps how? And yet if the same family composition WORKED with exact same gross income, I would get almost $150. Somehow getting “entitlements” that I paid into means my dollar is supposed to stretch double or something……not right!

  • Average middle-class person

    This is so wrong for our veterans and poor to be given less and less. I am all for going after fraud and catching those who abuse the system. But, I am also all for tax hikes for those who make $250,000 or more per year. These people have been getting richer every year, while the middle class and the poor have lost income and benefits due to the recession for the last 6 or more years. They have not been paying their fair share for decades now, and it is about time. Plus, I recently found out that they are only taxed for Social Security on the first $110,000 per year of their income. They should have to pay Social Security on every bit of their income through the end of the year, just like those of us who make under $110,000 per year do. It is so sickening and disgusting to me that these wealthy people, including most of our politicians, and huge corporations, keep justifying everything they get in the way of tax breaks, etc., while the rest of us get ZILCH. They want to go after the so-called “entitlements”, like Social Security, Medicare, etc., which the poor and middle class need to depend on to live, (and certainly deserve if they have paid into it over their entire working lives), while they are the biggest bunch of hypocrites thinking they are “entitled” to everything they get or have. Once again, I am so completely and utterly disgusted beyond words by the greed of some of the country’s wealthiest.

  • Doris Jamison

    IT’S A SHAME TO LIVE IN THE RICHEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD. AND TREAT OUR POOR PEOPLE THIS WAY, THE RICH GETS RICHER AND THE POOR GETS POORER. SHAME ON YOU G.O.P. LET’S STAY AWAKE. 2014 IS COMING. GET OUT AND BE HEARD AND VOTE THESE HEARTLESS RICH CONGRESS MEN AND WOMEN OUT OF OFFICE. THEY RATHER SPEND MONEY ON WAR (ANY WAR) THAN FEED THE POOR.

  • Corey

    I didn’t realize Ramen noodles were still considered food let alone healthy enough to call an actual meal. We can thank the Conservatives. Those who speak loudest about supporting the troops are doing it for PR.

  • gschloff55

    I know people in WA state that have already had their food stamps cut by $11, does this mean they’re going to be cut even further come Nov. 1 ? This is unconscionable, pure evil. They’re trying to starve people to their own benefits. Evil evil evil people (if you can call them that). They are lower than any scum on earth. How do they sleep at night knowing so many are hungry.

  • Carol Hawley Baker

    Maybe if the government stopped giving food stamp benefits to people who really truly don’t need it or who take advantage of all the government has to offer, there would be more money to provide to those veterans on SNAP as well as to those who truly do need SNAP benefits.

    • Shari D

      No matter how many people you take off the roles of SNAP “who truly don’t need it” (and how do you go about deciding that? That’s not up to you to calculate since you almost never know everything about somebody’s personal life) there is no way you’re going to make up $39 BILLION in cuts. No way is that going to happen. Financially it’s just not feasible. The problem is the GOP who think that by cutting out education funding, when they simultaneously keep harping on people to educate themselves to make their lives better by being able to get better jobs; by consistently denying that the minimum wage is a PROBLEM when it hasn’t been raised in like 10 years, especially in light of inflation; and by making enormous cuts in SNAP benefits – it’s all going to balance itself out all by itself! They are living in a world of delusion and denial and don’t give a damn about people who aren’t white, rich, male, conservative, pseudo-Christians who think, act and believe exactly like they do. Going to church on Sunday, and being able to quote a few (out of context) Biblical passages doesn’t turn them into Christians anymore than standing in a garage turns you into a car.

  • sapphire

    I am a mother of 3. I can only work part time because I have a rod in my spine. I have 2 chronic illnesses also that only allow me to stand for a certain amount of time a day. I have a bachelor’s degree and can not find a job that I can make into a career. I have 2 kids that are diabetics including myself. I only receive 125 in snap benefits. After I pay bills I have maybe 20 left and that has to go to my kids if they need something. I have to walk to work most of the time because I don’t have the gas. But I know people that work fulltime, making 600 a week and get more than 500 in snap benefits a month and they have just 1 or 2 kids. Here I am 3 kids, a partime job, sick, and only get 125. Something is wrong.