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Anti-abortion Missouri Republican criticized for new bill cutting fish out of ‘food stamp’ plans

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After catching flack for a bill that would require women to obtain permission before having an abortion, Missouri state Rep. Rick Brattin’s (R) latest proposal is being derided for seemingly arbitrary new limits against “food stamp” recipients.

The Riverfront Times reported that House Bill 813 would bar participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) from using it to buy fish, steak, soda, cookies, chips and energy drinks.

“There have been a lot of studies on fraud, when there were actually people buying, trading and selling their EBT cards, but it was a very small percentage of the overall population,” Washington University professor and author Mark Rank told the Times. “But fish is good for you — why should that be prohibited?”

Rank, who wrote a book examining and dispelling stereotypes regarding people relying on federal assistance programs, bills like HB 813 are fueled by the argument that many welfare and “food stamp” users actually use their benefits to live beyond their means.

“What I find is, first of all, food stamps run out by the third week of the month,” Rank said. “A lot of people I met are extremely frugal in terms of using their food stamps and making decent decisions for what foods to buy or not. What I find is for the most part, people are trying to get by.”

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch editorial board panned the Republican-controlled state legislature for using negative stigmas surrounding people using SNAP and other programs as the basis for a number of measures, including Brattin’s bill.

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“Among many, if not most, Republican lawmakers in Missouri, it is an article of faith that people on “welfare” are lazy good-for-nothings who prefer to sit on the sofa watching TV, eating steak, gawking at pornography and soaking up fabulous government benefits instead of hauling their able bodies to work,” the board wrote. “The facts behind poverty in Missouri belie this notion, but never mind! Why let facts get in the way when stereotypes are so much easier?”

Brattin also came under criticism last year after pushing a bill that required a woman seeking an abortion to receive consent from the man who impregnated her, except in cases involving rape — provided the woman could demonstrate that she had been assaulted. He later blamed “the women’s movement” for inspiring the bill, saying men had been forced out of the decision-making process regarding abortions.

[h/t Daily Kos]

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Virginia Democrats are so fired up that the party chair had to scold them: ‘Sit down — be quit’

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Democrats in Virginia are fired up as they gathered in Richmond for their annual gala dinner.

Political analysts believe the Democratic Party of Virginia has a good chance to win control of the state legislature in 2019's election, before setting their sights on the Commonwealth continuing its recent trend of voting Democratic in presidential elections.

Patrick Wilson, a political reporter for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, attended the event.

He reported that Democrats were so "noisy" that it was hard to hear the speakers, which include presidential candidates Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

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‘Everyone knows what to expect’ at Trump’s Amway Center re-election kickoff

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Donald Trump considers himself a legendary salesman, but can he really sell America on giving him four more drama-filled years at the White House?

Tuesday, he'll make his big pitch.

The 2020 reelection kickoff rally is being held in Orlando, Florida and campaign operations chief Michael Glassner says the "historic" event "has already generated tens of thousands of ticketing requests."

There's little mystery about how the night will go down.

Expect Trump, the self-promoting hero of his ghost-written book "The Art of the Deal," to claim the US economy is richer, the military stronger, and the country more respected than ever in history.

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Florida man’s own family blasts him after he was arrested for racist threats: ‘This isn’t how we were raised’

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After a Florida man was arrested for trying to start a race war, a member of his own family slammed his values.

"A Florida man’s social media posts that threatened violence against African-Americans, Jews and homosexuals and that urged his followers to start a race war netted him a $1 million bond," the Miami Herald reported Saturday. "And then there’s another $100,000 bond he would have to pay to get out of Lee County Jail because of a weapons charge."

Joshua Leff, 40, is being held in the Lee County Jail.

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