Often the words “hypocritical” and “Republican” go hand and hand. After all, these are the people who talk often about “small government” while massively growing government, and claim to be “fiscally conservative” yet seem to always drastically grow our national debt when they control the White House.
So when Kansas Republican Representative Tim Huelskamp mocked people who receive food stamps while his family received millions of dollars in government farm subsidies, I wasn’t shocked.
Rep. Huelskamp had some choice — and tasteless — words for those who rely on food stamps to help feed their families:
“Go pick up trash in a road ditch–you got to do something. There are 3.5-4 million American adults who are able-bodied, have no dependence and what do we require them to do to get a free check for food? Nothing.”
These comments were made in reference to the stereotype conservatives like to perpetuate about welfare recipients being a massive group of lazy individuals who choose to live off the government instead of going out and getting a job.
Granted, for a small portion of them, he’s right. There are abuses in our welfare system, but those pale in comparison to the millions of Americans who do rely on these programs to help feed their families.
But the real irony behind his comments comes in the way of farm subsidies. More specifically, government farm subsidies members of his own family have received for years.
A farm belonging to his brother received $1.6 million in federal subsidies between 1995 to 2011. His brother also received more than $30,000 for disaster subsidies. The disaster money is especially ironic considering Huelskamp voted against Hurricane Sandy relief.
Then Huelskamp’s parents’ farm also received $1.1 million in federal farm subsidies from 1995 to 2009.
So, that equates to about $2.7 million his family has received in government subsidies (aka “free handouts”).
It would take about 450 families of 3 (over 1,300 people) collecting the maximum SNAP benefit available for a full year to equal the amount that Huelskamp’s family has collected in “free handouts.”
Or to put it another way, it would take a single household of 3 non-working people collecting the maximum SNAP benefit available 450 years to equal the “handouts” that Huelskamp’s family collected in just 16 years.
Yet this guy has the nerve to mock people who rely on a little assistance to help feed their families?
Then when you take into account the fact that his brother’s farm took in thousands in disaster funds from the government, yet he voted against Hurricane Sandy relief—this man is absolutely reprehensible.
But then, what should we expect? The Republican party is built on ignorance and driven by hypocrisy.
It’s a party that has millions of people living on food stamps, voting for a party which openly calls them lazy freeloaders. Yet those voters don’t think these Republicans are talking about them – it’s clearly someone else they’re talking about when they call people on welfare “moochers.” They need them, everyone else is just “abusing the system.”
So please, I would encourage everyone reading this to click here and let Rep. Tim Huelskamp know what you think about his pathetic mocking of poor people on food stamps while his family received millions of dollars in government subsidies.