House GOP Works for Votes on Food Stamp Measure
Republican House leaders are working to line up votes for nearly $4 billion in annual food stamp cuts, but some GOP moderates are questioning if that is too much.
The savings would be achieved by allowing states to put broad new work requirements in place for many food stamp recipients and to test applicants for drugs. The House is scheduled to vote on the bill Thursday.
The bill also would end government waivers that have allowed able-bodied adults who don’t have dependents to receive food stamps indefinitely.
Conservatives have said the almost $80 billion-a-year program has become bloated. More than 47 million Americans, or 1 in 7, are now on food stamps, and the program’s cost has more than doubled in the last five years as the economy has struggled.
But finding a compromise — and the votes — to scale back the feeding program has been difficult. Conservatives have insisted on larger cuts, while Democrats have been united in opposition and moderate Republicans from areas with high food stamp usage have been wary of efforts to slim the program.