U.S. Congressman Diane Black (R-TN) released the following statement today applauding the passage of her amendment to H.R. 1947, the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, commonly referred to as the Farm bill, which ends a ten year agreement between the United States Department of Agriculture and the government of Mexico to promote enrollment in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), previously known as food stamps.
"It is outrageous that for nearly ten years the U.S. Department of Agriculture has, in collaboration with the Mexican government, used taxpayer dollars to promote food stamp enrollment to foreign nationals. Not only is this ill-conceived partnership with Mexico promoting a life of dependence, rather than upward mobility, there is no reason to believe that the Obama administration is not using this partnership as a way to get illegal immigrants enrolled in the SNAP program. This current partnership is among the most egregious examples of policies contributing to the 46 percent expansion in SNAP recipients under the Obama administration, and it must end now. My amendment offers an opportunity for Congress to be good stewards of taxpayers' dollars and get the US government out of the business of promoting dependence. I am pleased that my colleagues in the House have joined me in fighting to protect our social safety net and stop this misuse of taxpayer dollars by passing my amendment." said Congressman Diane Black.
Congressman Black's amendment was supported by FreedomWorks, Citizens Against Government Waste, National Taxpayers Union, Club for Growth, Heritage Action, and American Conservative Union.
Background on USDA's Partnership with Mexico:
USDA and Mexican government officials have collaborated in the production of Spanish spoken radio advertisements in Latin communities, training of recruitment workers, and traveled to 19 cities in Mexico to promote participation in SNAP on American taxpayers' dime.
The USDA additionally used outreach funds to publish a 55 page document guiding non-citizens how to take advantage of SNAP benefits.
Watchdog group Judicial Watch recently uncovered USDA records showing U.S. officials have been working closely with their counterparts at the Mexican Embassy to widely broaden the SNAP program with no effort to restrict aid to, identify, or apprehend illegal immigrants who may be on the food stamp rolls