It turns out, those federal cuts to the food stamp program are not detrimental as they were made out to be by Democrats.
According to new analysis by the Associated Press (AP), there are only four states in the country that are going to be affected by the federal cut to the food stamp program. And, Louisiana is not one of those four, which includes Michigan, Wisconsin, New Jersey and New Hampshire.
Originally, the plan was pushed by Republicans as a way to curtail a loophole in the food stamp program which was giving more food stamps to low-income families who were also participating in a federal heating assistance program. According to the AP, “States were giving some people as little as $1 a year in heating assistance so they could get more food aid. It’s called ‘heat and eat.'”
There would have been 16 states where the practice would have been remedied because of the federal cuts, but 12 governors have started finding ways to work around the system, which has some Republicans furious.
The states’ workaround — mostly by Democratic governors — has infuriated Republicans who pushed the cuts. In March, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, called the states’ moves “fraud.” House Agriculture Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., and House Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Upton, R-Mich., have asked the Obama administration to “hold states accountable” for dodging the cuts.
The new law says that people can’t get the higher food benefits unless they receive more than $20 a year in heating assistance, which lawmakers hoped would be too expensive for states to pay. But the governors in 12 states and the mayor of the District of Columbia have said they will find a way. Most will use federal heating assistance dollars. At least one state, California, will use its own money.
Issues with the food stamp program are no stranger to the state.
Back in July, a report found that nearly 4,000 deceased people in the state had received $1.3 million in food stamps between July 2009 and June 2013. Most of the deceased individuals who fraudulently received food stamps from the state kept receiving them four or more months after their death.