Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Associated Press: Senate rejects food stamp cuts

The House and Senate Agriculture committees were under instructions to find $3 billion in cuts over five years from programs under their jurisdiction. This led to suggestions by the farm lobby that the cuts should come disproportionately from food stamps. As recently as yesterday, there was talk that the fiscal conservatives were gaining the upper hand over W. Bush conservatives in budget arguements. Yet, today, the more sober house of Congress seems to have rejected these food stamp cuts.

According to an AP report this morning (via the Washington Post):

Senate Republicans have dropped plans to cut the popular food stamp program, as the chamber's leaders scrambled to assemble a $35 billion spending cut measure to implement the budget plan it adopted in April.

After protests from Agriculture Committee members Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) and James M. Talent (R-Mo.), panel Chairman Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) dropped more than $500 million in food stamp cuts from a farm and food subsidy measure coming to a committee vote today. The cuts could have meant a loss of benefits for 300,000 working families benefiting from more generous eligibility rules in some states.

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