Today, Congresswoman Terri A. Sewell (D-AL) released the following statement after voting against the House Agriculture Committee H.R 6083, The Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2012:
"Today, I voted against H.R. 6083, a bill that will have devastating consequences for more than 920,000 participants in the state of Alabama who depend on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Last year, my district was ranked the 5th hungriest district in America. SNAP has saved millions of lives and currently provides essential support to over 165,000 individuals in my district in Alabama alone.
This measure proposes a $16.5 billion cut in SNAP benefits, leaving more than 2 million low-income people without food assistance and over 280,000 low-income children without access to their free school meals. This is unconscionable! This harsh cut would disproportionately affect low-income seniors, people with disabilities and working-poor families with children.
While there is no dispute that we must make difficult budgetary decisions as our nation recovers from the worst economic recession since the Great Depression; however, we cannot do it at the expense of our most vulnerable -- children and seniors. Many families and their children depend on these government assistance programs that allow them to put food on their tables and make ends meet. Now is not the time to turn our backs on American families.
I remain committed to working together with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle in Congress on passing a comprehensive farm bill that supports our nation's struggling families, low-income women, children and farmers."