This week saw a convergence of Republican mendacity and incompetence in the failure of the Farm Bill to pass the U.S. House of Representatives. Additionally, a new and sinister threat has been revealed: Congressman Steve Southerland R-FL.
Southerland apparently has a different Bible than the rest us. Reading from the book of Ayn Rand, Republican Jesus said, “Blessed are they that starve the poor in the name of personal responsibility for they shall be re-elected by an avalanche of corporate money.” According to Bob Greenstein of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Southerland offered an amendment so cartoonishly evil and draconian that it cannot be exaggerated.
more after the jump...
His amendment to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program:
...would allow states to require most adults who receive or apply for SNAP — including parents with children as young as 1 year old and many people with disabilities — to work or participate in a work or training program for at least 20 hours a week or else have their entire family’s SNAP benefits cut off.
The amendment provides no jobs and no funds for work or training programs, and it does not require states to make any work opportunities available. People who want to work and are looking for a job but haven’t found one could be cut off.
And the amendment gives states a powerful financial incentive to do this. It allows them to keep half of the savings from cutting these people off and to use the money for whatever they want — tax cuts, special-interest subsidies, or anything else.
Moreover, the amendment bars states from spending more on employment and training than they do now and allows the work requirements to be applied to people with disabilities that can’t work and people with small children school age and younger that have no means of paying for child care.
Keep in mind that this amendment was in addition to cuts already in the bill that forced two million people off the program at a time of extreme hardship while simultaneously expanding farm subsidies for millionaire farmers.
I’m incoherent with rage.
Thankfully there’s a ram in the bush. Her name is Gwen Graham. Gwen, a lawyer, is the daughter of former Florida Senator Bob Graham and she’s running against this assclown I’ve been telling you about. The good news is that the district is competitive and that she can beat him.