- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 28, 2013

Enrollment in the food stamp program — officially the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program — has soared by 70 percent in the years since President Obama first took office, a new report finds.

The government said the recession ended in 2009, The Wall Street Journal reports, but enrollment in the food stamp program didn’t wane, as would be expected in an improving economy. Since 2008, it’s been on a steady rise, The Journal reports.

A record 47.8 million people participate in the program, as of December 2012 — a figure that translates into a 70 percent rise since 2008, The Journal says. Why?

Despite government claims, the job market is still lagging. The poverty rate is on the rise, The Journal says. And federal laws passed under former President Clinton and further under Mr. Obama are actually driving the enrollment rate higher. Those laws allow for those with higher incomes to take food stamps — the logic being that helping people before they reach crisis financial level will actually stimulate the economy, The Journal says.

The news for the future is more of the same.

Economists predict that food stamp enrollment will continue to rise in the coming year. Then, enrollment will start to drop, but slowly and only slightly, The Journal says.