What does it mean when one in seven people in the U.S. gets food stamps?

By Jack Cafferty

Forty-five million people – that’s one in seven living in the United States – received food stamps last year.

That’s a 70% increase from 2007, according to a shocking new report by the Congressional Budget Office.

It shows that in 2010, about three out of four food stamp households included a child, a person older than 60 or someone who is disabled.

Most households getting food stamps were very low income, only about $8,800 per year.

The average food stamp benefit per household was about $290 a month, which comes out to $4.30 per person per day.

The worst part is food stamp use is only expected to grow.

The CBO projects the number of people getting food stamps will rise slightly for the next two years, at which point it will start to drop, as long as the economy improves.

But we’re still talking historic highs here. In 2022, it’s estimated spending on food stamps will be among the highest of all nonhealth related federal programs for the poor.

Speaking of spending, it follows that the cost of the food stamp program has skyrocketed along with the growing number of participants.

The cost rose from $30 billion in 2007 to $72 billion last year.

The CBO says about two-thirds of the cost increase is due to more people getting food stamps. But spending is also going up due to temporarily higher benefits from the stimulus law.

Tune in to the Situation Room at 4pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.

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