'We’re going to live in reality over here': Republicans nix Kevin McCarthy's plan to slash food aid
Kevin McCarthy (Photo by Nicholas Kamm for AFP)

The showdown between Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and President Joe Biden is coming up as the debt ceiling and budget battles approach. Biden released his budget publicly, but the Republicans, thus far, have no plan of their own.

"Separately, as you and I discussed earlier, I look forward to talking with you about our Nation’s economic and fiscal future,” Biden said in a letter to McCarthy. “But for that conversation to be productive, we should both tell the American people what we are for.”

It's been over a month since Biden released his budget. McCarthy and his allies have only attacked Biden's budget.

According to those that have seen McCarthy's plan, the Republicans claim there are "loopholes" that are allowing people to buy things that Republicans don't like. The reality is that SNAP benefits make up just 1.9 percent of the federal budget, said the Center for Economic and Policy Research. It helps elderly seniors, people with disabilities, and families with children, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities explained. "Children under age 18 constitute nearly half (44 percent) of all SNAP participants."

Politico reported Sunday that McCarthy's latest idea is to slash food aid to poor families, including children. Still, it's not sitting well with Republican colleagues who are likely aware of the inflated costs around food.

“I’m sure it won’t be easy,” Politico cited Sen. John Thune (SD), who explained his party will get a second bite at the apple later in 2023 during the fight over the farm bill.

The report also cited a GOP Senate aide, who was granted anonymity so that they could be less diplomatic: "I mean, Godspeed. Get what you can. We’re going to live in reality over here."

Sen. John Boozman (R-AR), the top GOP official on the Senate Agriculture Committee, told the site that he doesn't think something like that would make it through a 60-vote filibuster-proof majority. But he also said that he doesn't think it would make it through McCarthy's House either, given the narrow margins.

In a country with an open fight over forced birth, Republicans are being criticized for making people have children have children they can't afford and then ripping away any assistance for the child. In some cases, the women forced to give birth aren't making it, leaving behind a single-income family.

"Maternal mortality rose by 40 percent at the height of the pandemic, according to new data released by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention," said the BBC.

The problem that House Republicans are facing is that the budget is heavy with things that people like, such as Social Security, healthcare, the military, veterans, transportation and education. Anything not mentioned in those categories is less than one percent of the federal spending, as displayed in the chart from the U.S. Treasury Department below.

Treasury Department's allocation of spending