The USDA launched a test of online grocery shopping for food stamp recipients in New York State on Thursday, with plans to expand the pilot to nine states across the nation.
The administration is motivated by conservative ideology, not facts, with its proposal to toughen the 90-day limit on food stamps for able-bodied adults, said the chair of a House Agriculture subcommittee on Wednesday, vowing “to do everything I can to stop this rule.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell shelved, at least for the moment, a $14-billion disaster aid bill on Monday after Democrats and Republicans took turns threatening a filibuster over aid to Puerto Rico.
The Trump administration’s proposal for stricter enforcement of the 90-day limit on food stamps for able-bodied adults would most often hit people living alone in deep poverty, said an analysis by Mathematica Policy Research. More than 1 million people would be affected by the regulation, the report said.
Questioned for the second day in a row on Capitol Hill, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said he has the authority to tighten food stamp rules for able-bodied adults even if lawmakers don’t like it. Senate Democrats pushed back, urging Perdue on Thursday to withdraw the proposal.
The Trump administration will shift able-bodied Americans into better-paying jobs through stricter enforcement of a 90-day limit on food stamps, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue told skeptical House lawmakers on Wednesday. Democrats threatened litigation to stop the proposal, which could end SNAP benefits to more than 700,000 people.
In a bookend to its proposal to toughen the time limit on food stamps for able-bodied adults, the USDA is working on a regulation to reduce the number of people who are automatically considered for SNAP benefits because they receive welfare assistance.
Delayed for weeks by the partial federal shutdown, the Trump administration published its proposal to restrict states from allowing able-bodied adults to collect SNAP benefits for more than 90 days if they are not working at least 20 hours a week. The Federal Register notice ignited a campaign to block the proposal, which opponents said is contrary to the 2018 food and farm law.
In budget proposals in 2017 and 2018, President Trump tried to slash funding for SNAP by about $200 billion over 10 years — roughly one-fourth of its total funding. Now, with Trump close to unveiling his fiscal 2020 budget package, the “hunger community” is concerned about a renewed call for massive cuts.