Part of Allen Quist's views on food stamps made the City Pages yesterday in Allen Quist ignores facts, alleges food stamp program discriminates against married couples.
But there's more that he wasn't sharing with the press during his recent anti-Farm Bill tour.
Just as Mike Parry saved his "pill popping" "scary" governor comments for a Repulican fundraiser in Brown County the night before Farmfest back in August, Quist had some choice words as well.
When you get a sense of how this works, you'll get a sense of why we're spending ourselves into bankruptcy. Here's what's happening. Yes we have more people who are poor, but that's not the big thing. The Food Stamp Law is constructed to turn us into a European-style welfare state.
Here' how it works. The federal government pays for 100 percent of the food stamps. The state only pays for one-half of the administrative costs.So every state wants to maximize the federal money coming in. So every state tries to get as many people on food stamps as it possibly can.
. . .Then the federal government allows the states to a large degree to set the eligibility. Minnesota in 2010, raised the eligibility up to 165 percent of poverty. Now let me tell you what that means.
Republican Tim Pawlenty was governor in 2010; the legislature was controlled by the DFL. Were they in cohoots to change America into a "European welfare state"?
Contemporary news reports suggest that one of the chief drivers for eliminating the asset test in 2010 came from those who run food banks and food shelves, as they had been overwhelmed by need while Minnesota had a low participation rate in the federal program. A press release, Boston Consulting Group to Second Harvest Heartland: Minnesota is Leaving More Than $200 Million in Food and Money on the Table, laid out the case:
Second Harvest Heartland, the Upper Midwest's largest hunger relief organization, today announces the results of a pro-bono study conducted on its behalf by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), a worldwide strategy consulting firm. That study indicates that Minnesota is leaving approximately $210 million in food and money on the table by not fully participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as "Food Stamps").
"SNAP is one of the best and biggest tools available to positively impact hunger in Minnesota and, as a result, positively impact our state's economy as well," said Rob Zeaske, executive director of Second Harvest Heartland. "BCG's study indicates that Minnesota is significantly underutilizing SNAP and, in my opinion, is egregiously leaving food and money on the table."
According to the report, Minnesota trails all but seven states in SNAP participation with only 302,000 of the state's 670,000 income-eligible residents receiving benefits. In addition, only five states have higher costs to administer SNAP. BCG suggests that by enrolling currently eligible but non-participating individuals into the program, Minnesota would add $210 million to its annual economy as a result of direct benefits and a multiplier effect as new recipients shop in local food stores.
. . ."Minnesota is facing a multi-billion dollar budget gap and area food shelves are experiencing a 40 percent increase in visits," said Peter Lawyer, senior partner and managing director of The Boston Consulting Group's Minneapolis office. "The SNAP program can be an effective safety net for families and individuals who are facing tough times—and Minnesota's taxpayers have already picked up the tab.
But to Allen Quist, it's part of a grand conspiracy--and one that allows unmarried couples with two kids, making $49.500 in yearly income, living in a house worth a million dollars, driving a Rolls while fishing in a boat better than his own
Now let me tell you what that means. It means you can have a couple, living together unmarried-- by the way this discriminates against marriage, just like Obamacare--a couple, unmarried, two children, making $49,500 a year, they qualify for food stamps with Minnesota. That's how generous it is in Minnesota.
Minnesota removed all requirements for assets. They can have a million dollar house, they can have a Rolls Royce in the garage, they can have a nice boat--like I wish I had--they could be out fishing--like I wish I was--and still qualify for food stamps.
In other words, the system is broken. In other words the system is broken. The system needs reform. So what is Congressman Walz out there saying? He's saying pass this bill right now, fine print, before the public knows what it's all about. Ladies and gentleman, if we can't say no to this kind of wild, irresponsible government spending, then we are not going to solve this.
The House version of the Farm Bill restores the assets test, according to the bill summary posted by Chairman Frank Lucas (R-Oklahoma). The language is found on page 7 of Chairman Lucas's detailed summary pdf. Quist seems to be basing his remarks off the Republican anti-welfare campaign playbook, rather than what's in the bill that the House Ag committee worked on.
And then there's his revival of stereotypes of welfare recipients-- because we all know that people on food assistance are shacked up in million homes, cruising around in their Rolls when they're not out fishing in awesome boats, when they're not working at their jobs that pay under $25,000. Bluestem sees those Rolls parked bumper-to-bumper at Cashwise and Walmart here in Hutchinson since HTI off-shored its manufacturing. Yep.
But Allen has more. All those farm leaders calling for passage of the Fall Bill? Dupes:
Now, what I'm saying here tonight, is what I'm going to say to the farmers tomorrow at Farmfest. I am a farmer myself and I'm going to say that we farmers can't allow ourselves to become human shields to the left that wants to destroy our country by turning it into a European-style welfare state that in addition is going broke.
Quist's remarks at Farmfest were far more temperate, and he added that he has nothing against people on food aid. But he left out the Rolls part and didn't tell the farmers they were "human shields" for the "left that wants to destroy this country." Or marriage.
And the notion that Oklahoma Republican Frank Lucas or anyone on the House Ag Committee wants to destroy America is silly stuff.
Here's the clip that Josh Moniz took at the fundraiser:
Cartoon of Allen Quist by Ken AvidorWalz op-ed on Farm Bill: Not just for farmers