The House GOP continues its war on the poor by underfunding agriculture and food safety programs, but this part of their budget proposal is really, um, special —
And in a surprising twist, the bill language specifies that only rural areas are to benefit in the future from funding requested by the administration this year to continue a modest summer demonstration program to help children from low-income households â€” both urban and rural â€” during those months when school meals are not available.
Since 2010, the program has operated from an initial appropriation of $85 million, and the goal has been to test alternative approaches to distribute aid when schools are not in session. The White House asked for an additional $30 million to continue the effort, but the House bill provides $27 million for whatâ€™s described as an entirely new pilot program focused on rural areas only.
Democrats were surprised to see urban children were excluded. And the GOP had some trouble explaining the history itself. But a spokeswoman confirmed that the intent of the bill is a pilot project in â€œrural areasâ€ only.
Gee, I wonder why they’d have issues about aid to urban but not rural children (she said, not really wondering). See also Josh Marshall.