Showing posts with label Cuts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cuts. Show all posts

September 21, 2013

$40 Billion in Cuts to Food Stamps Yesterday but The Members who Voted for this Do Go for Caviar Expensive Trips to Visit The Poor Outside USA Around The World

Congresswoman Schools Republicans On Their Food Stamp Hypocrisy Using Steak, Vodka, And Caviar (Video)
Democratic Rep. Jackie Speier took to the House of Representatives floor Thursday to point out several members of Congress who had large numbers of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients in their districts but opposed the program. She also exposed that many of those same members of Congress took trips around the world with large stipends for food and lodging.Speier’s unconventional speech on Thursday used food props on the House floor to portray members of Congress as steak-eating, vodka-swilling hypocrites in a bid to get Congress to reject a GOP bill cutting $40 billion in food stamps.Speier said members of Congress typically get lavish food allowances, all at the tax payers expense, when they travel overseas and therefore get to indulge. She said that stands in contrast to the policy Republicans want to force on lower-income people by passing new limits on food stamps.  Buzzfeed explains Democratic Rep. Jackie Speier’s remarks:
“In my district, California 14, we have about 4,000 families who are on food stamps, but some of my colleagues have thousands and thousands more,” Rep. Speier said. “Yet, they somehow feel like crusaders, like heroes when they vote to cut food stamps. Some of these same members travel to foreign countries under the guise of official business. They dine at lavish restaurants, eating steak, vodka and even caviar. They receive money to do this. That’s right, they don’t pay out of pocket for these meals.”
Speier went on, using particular examples of members of Congress who went on sponsored trips and spent large amounts of money on food and lodging.
“Let me give you a few examples: One member was given $127.41 a day for food on his trip to Argentina. He probably had a fair amount of steak,” she said.
“Another member was given $3,588 for food and lodging during a six-day trip to Russia. He probably drank a fair amount of vodka and probably even had some caviar. That particular member has 21,000 food stamp recipients in his district. One of those people who is on food stamps could live a year on what this congressman spent on food and lodging for six days,” she added.
“Another 20 members made a trip to Dublin, Ireland. They got $166 a day for food. These members didn’t pay a dime. They received almost $200 for a single meal only for themselves. Yet, for them the idea of helping fellow Americans spend less than $5 a day makes their skin crawl. The families of veterans, of farmers, of the disabled, of the working poor are not visible to them, not even when they are their own constituents.”

In a previous article, BuzzFeed pointed out many of the Republican members of Congress leading the charge to limit the food stamp program represented large numbers of food stamp recipients.
A quick BuzzFeed search found that the member of Congress who took the trip to Argentina who spent $127 was Rep. Frank Lucas of Oklahoma and the trip was sponsored by the Franklin Center for Global Policy Exchange. The member of Congress who took the trip to Russia was Rep. Steve King of Iowa. The 20 members of Congress who went to Dublin can be found here. The trip, sponsored by the Franklin Center for Global Policy Exchange, had an estimated budget of $450,000 to $750,000 according to Roll Call. 

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