Representatives Heck (R-NV3) and Amodei (R-NV2) voted in favor of H.R. 2642, the Food Stamp Free Farm Bill, which passed the House on a 216-208 vote on July 11, 2013. [roll call 353] Lovely. However, might I be excused for asking about the “Pro-Life” bona fides of the two conservative representatives from the Silver State when it’s laudable to decry a woman’s right to choose the medical procedures necessary to terminate a problematic pregnancy, or even to deplore the use of contraceptives — BUT once the child is born it is equally laudable to criticize the profligacy of women who have “too many children” and therefore require public assistance to feed them?
That said, two of Nevada’s Congressional representatives have voted to cut food assistance to approximately 156,319 households in this state.
“In 2011, 12% (332,959) of the population participated in SNAP in Nevada, which is 3% less than the average for all SNAP Participation and Benefits.
In 2011, 16% (156,319) of the households participated in SNAP in Nevada, which is 2% less than the average for all SNAP Participation and Benefits.” [NVSNAP]
What benefit has been slashed? The average individual benefit in NV as of 2011 was $124 per month. Who are the people assisted by this meager benefit? 71% of all SNAP participants are families with children. 26% of all Nevada SNAP participants are families with elderly or disabled individuals. 42% of all Nevada participants are WORKING. [CBPP pdf]
The GOP’s stereotypical imagery of the food stamp recipient as a loafer consuming brew on the porch steps while “hard working” Americans underwrite his existence is just that — an marketable image for ideological consumption, a stereotype suitable for assuaging the I Got Mine You Try To Get Yours Sucker self-serving philosophy of selfishness.
It appears this stereotype is alive and well and vivid for at least two of Nevada’s Congressional representatives, Dicken’s beadle would have been proud. Representative Titus (D-NV1) voted against the bill, Representative Horsford is recorded as not voting.