Pocan Completes SNAP Challenge; Votes to Restore Food Stamps Funding to Farm Bill
WASHINGTON– U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan (WI-02) concluded the “SNAP Challenge” today, ending a week during which he lived off the food stamp budget of $4.50 of food per day to bring attention to the country’s hunger crisis and highlight Republican efforts to cut $20.5 billion from this critical food assistance program. On his final day of the challenge, Pocan voted on an amendment to the Farm Bill that would have restored the Republican cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which benefits more than 800,000 Wisconsinites. The amendment failed on a largely party-line vote.
Every day in this country, SNAP prevents 47 million Americans from going hungry. The average nationwide weekly benefit for someone on SNAP is $31.50 a week, which breaks down to $4.50 per day and $1.50 per meal. Approximately two-thirds of the benefits go to children, the elderly or the severely disabled. Yet if the proposed $20.5 billion in cuts to SNAP are implemented, two million Americans would be kicked out of the program, and 210,000 children in low-income families would lose access to free school meals.
“For the past week, I have stood with the 800,000 Wisconsinites who use SNAP benefits to put food on their family’s table,” Pocan said. “While the challenge has been difficult, my experience is nothing compared to the daily struggles our hungry citizens face every day. For them, SNAP is a vital lifeline that helps feed their families and lift themselves out of severe poverty. The dangerous cuts proposed by my colleagues across the aisle will have deep, devastating consequences for the neediest Americans if they become law. I was proud to vote to reverse these cuts, and I will continue to fight to make sure no American is allowed to go hungry.”