Food Stamp Participation the Highest It's Ever Been

Erika Johnsen

4/23/2012 2:41:00 PM - Erika Johnsen

According to a new CBO report, participation in food stamp programs is at an all-time high. But, don't you dare call President Obama the "food stamp president!"

Spending on SNAP benefits grew by about 135 percent between 2007 and 2011 ...

  • About 65 percent of growth came from an increase in the number of people receiving benefits. That increase was driven primarily by the weak economy.
  • About 20 percent of growth can be attributed to temporarily higher benefit amounts. That increase was legislated in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
  • The final 15 percent of growth stems from other factors, such as higher food prices and lower income among beneficiaries, both of which boosted benefits.

To hear Obama's Keynesian-enthusiast USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack tell it, food stamps are the most direct stimulus you can get in this economy, or something -- so, along with the Obama administration's many other highly-lauded 'stimulus' projects, where exactly are these correspondingly heightened employment figures we were promised?