Hoyer: House Dems Will Likely Support $9 Billion in Food Stamp Cuts

Posted: Jan 12, 2014 7:25 PM
Hoyer: House Dems Will Likely Support $9 Billion in Food Stamp Cuts

House Democrats will likely support a bipartisan proposal that would cut food stamps by $9 billion, Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said this week, reports The Hill.

"If that is the figure, and if other matters that are still at issue can be resolved, I think the bill will probably pass, and it will pass with Democratic — some Democratic — support," Hoyer said. "Not, certainly, universal Democratic support. … But I think it will pass."

Bipartisan negotiators from both chambers are said to be nearing a deal on a farm bill that would include roughly $9 billion in cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly known as food stamps.

The deal would break a yearslong impasse over a five-year renewal of the farm bill that had centered largely around the parties' widely different approaches to SNAP funding. While House Republicans have pushed for a $39 billion cut to the program over a decade, Senate Democrats had proposed $4 billion.

Although Hoyer isn’t supportive of the cut to food stamps, he is “inclined to support” it as part of a larger farm bill agreement.

"I don't like the fact that we went further on the [SNAP] cuts," he said. "But that's over 10 years, so it's not as bad as it could have been, and much better, frankly, than we could have expected."

House Speaker John Boehner will need the support from Democrats as many conservative Republicans feel that agreeing to significantly less than $39 billion in cuts is a ‘nonstarter.’