Don’t blame Obama. It’s the pen’s fault.
President Obama risks muddling his message when he heads to Michigan on Friday to sign a farm bill that cuts $8 billion in funding for food stamps.
Obama has been criss-crossing the country arguing for the need to strengthen the nation’s ladders of opportunity, but on Friday will sign into law a bill that many in his party say will hurt the neediest Americans.
It’s not the only example of the White House taking an action that arguably runs against its theme of combating income inequality, either.
Obama in his State of the Union address lobbied Congress to grant him fast-track trade powers — something many liberals say will clear the way for deals that hurt jobs and wages. House Democrats sent Obama a letter warning that bad trade deals had led to declining workplace protections, benefits, and quality of life.
Congressional Democrats also remain upset over the president’s inclusion of chained CPI — which would effectively slow the growth of entitlement benefits — in his budget offer last year. Lawmakers have urged the president to pull back on that offer in his upcoming budget proposal, warning it was an unmatched concession to Republicans that would hurt the poor and seniors.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), explaining her no vote on the farm bill, said families receiving food aid “didn’t spend our nation into debt and we shouldn’t tighten the federal belt around their waists.”
Considering the amount spent on food stamps since 2009, this is chump change. Yet it speaks volumes that the media is whining about this relative pittance. Of course Obama will now go around proudly saying he’s helped cut costs and how can anyone dare say he’s increased spending?