Cuts in food stamps would raise health costs, report says

WASHINGTON — Nearly half a million people who receive food stamps but still do not get enough to eat would lose their eligibility for the program under proposed cuts expected to be taken up again by Congress. An additional 160,000 to 305,000 recipients who do get enough to eat would also lose their eligibility and the ability to adequately feed themselves.

In total, about 5.1 million people would be eliminated from the program, said a report by the Health Impact Project.

The Washington research group, a collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Pew Charitable Trusts, said the cuts to the program, also known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, would also increase poverty.


The combination of poverty and a lack of food would lead to increases in such illnesses as heart disease and diabetes among adults, the study found. In children, the cuts would lead to higher rates of asthma and depression. Diabetes alone could increase federal and state health care costs by nearly $15 billion over the next 10 years, the report found. “The SNAP program has implications for health, and we wanted to make sure that health is part of the debate,” said Aaron Wernham, the director of the project.

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The report comes as Congress is working to pass a farm bill. A Senate bill passed in May would cut about $4.5 billion from the food stamp program. The House approved a farm bill this month that for the first time since 1973 did not include the food stamp program.

Nearly 48 million people receive food stamp benefits, and the program costs about $80 billion a year.

Many Republicans say the program is rife with fraud, with hundreds of ineligible people receiving benefits. The Agriculture Department says that fraud rates are low and that the people who receive the benefits need them because of a tough economy.

New York Times


Super PAC raises $1 million in support of Hillary Clinton


A group working to support Hillary Clinton’s prospective presidential bid has raised more than $1 million.

An official with the Ready For Hillary super PAC confirmed Tuesday that the organization hit the million-dollar threshold since beginning to collect donations in earnest this spring. The total will be reported in the group’s financial report on Wednesday.

Clinton, who resigned as secretary of state in February, has not announced whether she will seek the presidency in 2016. But the super PAC dedicated to her political future has attracted prominent donors.

Associated Press


Christie-Paul’s give and take now ‘gimme and take’

LITTLE FERRY, N.J. — New Jersey Governor Chris Christie does not appear to want his war of words with Kentucky Senator Rand Paul to end.


Christie fired back on Tuesday for Paul’s remark that New Jersey has a ‘‘Gimme, gimme, gimme’’ attitude about federal aid after Hurricane Sandy.

Paul said at a fund-raiser in Nashville on Sunday that Christie and New York Representative Peter King — both Republicans like Paul — ‘‘are the people who are bankrupting the government and not letting enough money be left over for national defense.’’

Speaking at a news conference to announce grants for northern New Jersey residents affected by Sandy, Christie said he ‘‘has nothing personal’’ against Paul but offered the following:

‘‘I find it interesting that Senator Paul is accusing us of having a ‘‘Gimme, gimme, gimme’’ attitude toward federal spending when in fact New Jersey is a donor state and we get 61 cents back on every dollar we send to Washington. Interestingly, Kentucky gets $1.51 on every dollar they send to Washington,’’ he said.

The evolving spat involves two Republicans many consider potential 2016 presidential hopefuls.

Associated Press