President Obama’s Department Of Agriculture (USDA) continues to spend tax money to promote food stamps to illegal immigrants living in and entering the United States. The government agency has done this for over a decade despite the fact that federal law requires individuals entering the US to be financially independent.
Food stamps, or in USDA parlance, the “Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP),” came under controversy last year for being promoted to illegal immigrants. Documents obtained by Judicial Watch last year revealed that the USDA works with the Mexican government to promote participation by illegal immigrants.
As Judicial Watch reported, “The promotion of [SNAP] includes a Spanish-language flyer provided to the Mexican Embassy by the USDA with a statement advising Mexicans in the U.S. that they do not need to declare their immigration status in order to receive financial assistance. Emphasized in bold and underlined, the statement reads, ‘You need not divulge information regarding your immigration status in seeking this benefit for your children.’”
Despite these findings, the House’s new $1 trillion bill does not defund the USDA’s promotion of SNAP to illegal immigrants — it only “strongly” encourages the USDA to stop the program.
An unnamed GOP congressional aide told TheBlaze, “It’s simply appalling that our government is even doing this—recruiting people who have come to America into government dependence. There is an ongoing partnership with USDA and the government of Mexico to promote food stamp use by Mexican nationals in the U.S. What happens in the omnibus is they put out the summary document claiming they are prohibiting the program. But in reality, there is no language that does this. There is language in the nonbinding explanatory statement encouraging USDA to stop working with foreign governments to promote food stamp use by immigrants, but that is not legally binding.”
It is unknown how much promoting SNAP to illegal immigrants costs taxpayers.
House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers said, “There is concern about the use of valuable tax dollars to promote enrollment of SNAP through radio, television, and other advertisements as well as outreach activities with foreign governments to encourage the use of SNAP. USDA is strongly encouraged to cease these types o f government-sponsored recruitment activities.”
The new House bill, filed on Monday night, did not eliminate the program but it did include requirements meant to “weed out” waste, fraud, and abuse in SNAP. The bill is expected to be voted on in the Senate this Friday.