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Newly Approved Omnibus Bill Funds USDA Food Stamp Ads in Mexico

Written By : John Hawkins
January 17, 2014

Good news, everybody! We’re using your tax dollars to troll for more food stamp recipients….IN MEXICO.

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The omnibus spending bill before Congress continues to fund U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) advertising programs for food stamps in foreign countries like Mexico, Breitbart News has learned.

The bill was hashed out between House Appropriations Committee chairman Rep. Hal Rogers (R-KY) and Senate Appropriations Committee chairwoman Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD). The funding will continue despite claims in a document the House Appropriations Committee published that the bill contains a “prohibition” on such programs. Page three of this press document states regarding food stamps that the omnibus spending bill contains a “prohibition on advertisements or outreach with foreign governments.”

The entire paragraph that contains that statement reads:

Requirements for the Secretary of Agriculture to help weed out and eliminate waste, fraud, and abuse in the SNAP program – including a directive to ban fraudulent vendors, and a prohibition on advertisements or outreach with foreign governments.

However, upon reading through the text of the bill and the bill summary explanatory document, there is no such “prohibition” included in it. Instead, the explanatory document that Rogers published just states that USDA is “strongly discouraged” from advertising food stamps programs with foreign governments.

“There is concern about the use of valuable tax dollars to promote enrollment of SNAP through radio, television, and other advertisements as well as outreach activities with foreign governments to encourage the use of SNAP,” the explanatory document Rogers published states. “USDA is strongly encouraged to cease these types of government-sponsored recruitment activities.”

There is a massive difference between actually prohibiting the use of funds via law through the omnibus bill, or defunding the program, and merely issuing a strongly-worded warning to the USDA about the practice.

House Appropriations Committee spokeswoman Jennifer Hing admitted to Breitbart News that there is not really a “prohibition” on funding for such programs.

“The committee’s position is that for practical purposes, this language is a ‘directive’ to ‘ban,’” Hing said in an email on Tuesday. “It is binding in that decisions on future SNAP funding could hinge on compliance.”

Yet the mere threat of future repercussions if the USDA continues these practices does nothing to stop them now.

Current USDA secretary Tom Vilsack has promoted this policy of advertising food stamps programs with foreign governments and evaded oversight pressure from various members of Congress, like Senate Budget Committee ranking member Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), on the matter.

It’s the same old, same old with the Democrats. Their goal is make as many people as possible dependent on the US government because the more helpless poor people who rely on the government for their sustenance there are, the more votes they’re likely to get. It’s also the same old, same old with the Republicans who talk a good game about fighting it, but in the end, we always seem to find that they’re not really serious about going to the mat over it.

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