- The Washington Times - Monday, August 6, 2018

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Barack Obama was dubbed the food stamp president — and for good reason.

President Donald Trump is anything but.

In 2013, in the throes of Obama’s roaring — insert laugh here — economy — enrollment in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, hit all-time highs.

Think about that legacy for a moment: One of Obama’s big claims to fame is that he oversaw an economy that gave out more free SNAP food than any other time in U.S. history. Or, another way to see it — more Americans depended on government SNAP dole-outs to feed their families during Obama’s time in the White House than at any other time in U.S. history.

What a proud moment — insert sigh here.

Now comes Trump.

“Food stamp enrollment falls to 8-year low as Trump clamps down on fraud, economy improves,” blared one recent Fox News headline.

Quite right. Look for more of the same under this White House.

A couple months ago, he changed the way the Department of Agriculture determined disbursements for SNAP by making the priority for recipients a back-to-work game plan. The strategy’s working.

“More than 2.8 million people dropped off food stamps since President Trump’s first full month in office,” Breitbart reported, citing USDA statistics.

And since?

“During Trump’s first year and a half as president,” the news outlet went on, “many people discontinued their SNAP benefits due to the Trump administration’s attempts to reform SNAP at both the federal and state levels of government.”

Here’s another reason people are getting off the government dole: the economy. Unemployment’s hovering around the 4 percent mark, GDP growth is on its way to hitting 5 percent, consumer confidence is climbing, corporations are hiring and giving out bonuses — and all that’s having the effect of lowering the burden on taxpayers to provide for welfare and entitlement programs.

After all, employed Americans can feed themselves.

And that is the magic touch of this administration versus the Obama days. The previous White House wanted the people to rely on government in order to gain and keep control.

The Trump White House wants people to provide for themselves — as was intended by this free market system.

• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter, @ckchumley.


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