GOP Bill Proposal Bans Using Food Stamps For Junk Food

Sep 16, 2013 11:40 AM EDT | By Dina Exil

A new proposal by Congress would ban food stamps recipients from buying junk food.

According to Yahoo News, the bill proposed by Rep. Phil Roe, R-Tenn., would require food stamp recipients to purchase only healthy food.

"As a physician, I realize the importance of healthy eating, and as an obstetrician, I've seen how the WIC program helps empower families receiving assistance to use taxpayer dollars to purchase healthy, wholesome foods," Roe said in a statement published on his congressional site. "If these guidelines are good and healthy enough for women and children, then SNAP recipients should also benefit from adhering to the same standards."

The is bill would also require food stamp recipients to follow a nutritional guidelines under the WIC program as a way of ensuring recipients eat more nutritious meals with their funds.

"Already states like Wisconsin and South Carolina have shown interest in improving the healthfulness of choices in their SNAP programs," Roe said. "By giving SNAP recipients more nutritious choices, we can take a meaningful step towards ending hunger in America."

The new bill is a response to the 2012 study, which showed food stamp recipients were wasting about $2 billion a year on junk food. According to Yahoo News, the new bill does not come with criticism. Critics said the new bill would impact low-income families.

They also point out that Roe previously opposed efforts by first lady Michelle Obama to improve national school lunch nutritional standards.

In August, it was reported that House Republicans hoped to cut $40 billion from future SNAP budgetsCongress was proposing an additional 160,000 to 305,000 food stamp recipients lose their eligibility to be in the program. 

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