Yarmuth Responds to GOP Plans to Target Families Most in Need
Washington, D.C. – While President Trump and Congressional Republicans scramble to pass their historically unpopular tax scam, they’re already plotting their next move. After driving up the deficit through huge tax cuts for people who need help the least, they plan to target core safety net programs such as Medicare, Medicaid and nutrition assistance that protect millions of Americans:
As Republicans near the finish line on a long-sought tax overhaul, President Donald Trump has committed them to taking up a welfare-revamp fight next…The president didn’t offer specifics about which of the dozens of welfare programs he was seeking to change, or how. But congressional Republicans who have been pushing him for months to pursue the issue have proposed layering tougher work requirements on beneficiaries of programs such as food stamps, which are used by around 43 million Americans, and the cash benefit known as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, which is received by around 3.5 million people.
Medicare is the “biggest entitlement” that needs an overhaul as health-care obligations are the biggest drivers of U.S. debt, House Speaker Paul Ryan says on Denver KHOW’s “The Ross Kaminsky Show.” Ryan says he believes he’s making an impression on President Trump on the need to revamp Medicare; Republican lawmakers are working with Trump to see what entitlements he wants to tackle. Ryan also stressed need for Congress to begin effort of overhauling social programs in order to “get people from welfare to work”
USDA signaled on Tuesday plans to give states greater flexibility over how they administer food stamps, potentially opening the door to stricter work requirements or drug testing on recipients. The announcement comes as Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker announced that he would move ahead with drug testing on able-bodied adults applying for food stamps, something the Obama administration had successfully blocked in the past. The Trump administration is also expected to announced that it would allow states to impose work requirements for Medicaid recipients — moves that anti-poverty advocates see as an assault on the safety net for vulnerable Americans. Republicans have long sought to rein in programs like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, more commonly known as food stamps, a more than $70 billion program that now helps roughly 1 in 8 Americans.
“Republicans aren’t hiding the final piece of their tax scam on the American people. After they give the wealthy and well-connected a tax cut that will add more than $1 trillion to our deficits, they are going to tell the American people we can’t afford programs that help children, seniors, people with disabilities and those struggling to get by,” said Congressman John Yarmuth, Ranking Member of the House Budget Committee. “Their policies are more than misguided—they are counterproductive. With millions of Americans still facing economic hardships, we cannot gut the very programs that help them stay out of poverty and get back on their feet.”
Unfortunately, Republicans often resort to stereotypes and misinformation to denigrate these vital programs. See below recent reports from House Budget Committee Democrats that counter their false claims and highlight the important role many of these programs play in providing Americans with a basic standard of living:
- HBCD Report: SNAP Participation Doesn’t Snap Back – That’s By Design
- HBCD Report: SNAP Encourages Work
- HBCD Report: What You Need to Know About Means-Tested Entitlements