Amid the chaos in Washington over the past week, the House and Senate came together in a rare show of bipartisanship to pass the Farm Bill. Though House republicans tried to add work requirements for SNAP (food stamp) recipients to the bill during the legislative process, their efforts failed and these measures were left out of the final version of the bill. President Trump, however, instructed the USDA, the federal body that administers the SNAP program to add new rules requiring the very same work requirements that Congress rejected during the legislative process.
If these rules are enacted, it is estimated that 800,000 SNAP recipients will see current benefits eliminated or significantly reduced. Coming just days before Christmas, the President and his administration are yet again reminding us whose interests they are in office to advance.
The President's actions are not just cynical; they are deeply harmful to those who are unemployed and underemployed and facing hunger. At a time when we need to be taking steps to expand food access and reduce food insecurity, these proposed rules will make it harder for families to receive food assistance under the SNAP program.
The incoming Congress must not only roll back these rules, but they must take real steps to expand food access under the SNAP program.