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100 Million Americans Now Getting Federal Welfare

According to Daniel Halper at the Weekly Standard's blog, yesterday:

"A new chart set to be released later today by the Republican side of the Senate Budget Committee details a startling statistic: "Over 100 Million People in U.S. Now Receiving Some Form Of Federal Welfare."

And here's the chart that Halper posted yesterday:

Halper provides the context:

"The federal government administers nearly 80 different overlapping federal means-tested welfare programs," the Senate Budget Committee notes. However, the committee states, the figures used in the chart do not include those who are only benefiting from Social Security and/or Medicare.

"Food stamps and Medicaid make up a large--and growing--chunk of the more than 100 million recipients. "Among the major means tested welfare programs, since 2000 Medicaid has increased from 34 million people to 54 million in 2011 and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, or food stamps) from 17 million to 45 million in 2011," says the Senate Budget Committee. "Spending on food stamps alone is projected to reach $800 billion over the next decade."

"The data come "from the U.S. Census’s Survey of Income and Program Participation shows that nearly 110,000 million individuals received a welfare benefit in 2011. (These figures do not include other means-tested benefits such as the Earned Income Tax Credit or the health insurance premium subsidies included in the President’s health care law. CBO estimates that the premium subsidies, scheduled to begin in 2014, will cover at least 25 million individuals by the end of the decade.)"

Now that sure seems like something to differentiate the two major political party candidates when you step into the voting booth on Tuesday, November 6, 2012. Makes you wonder what the Washington Post's Ezra Klein is talking about in writing about "(T)he massive policy gap between Obama and Romney."

Thanks to Ranking Budget Committee Member, Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama) for the many charts available at the Senate Budget Committee (GOP) website.

UPDATE (8/15/12) At Human Events on Monday, columnist David Harsanyi wrote:

"Dependency is growing, exploding actually, and it’s no accident.

"Most readers will remember that one of President Barack Obama’s first reelection campaign offerings, “The Life of Julia,” an ode to an imaginary woman who lived her entire life benefiting from government dependency and other people’s money rather than individual initiative and hard work.

"Americans, the administration’s case goes, should be able to enjoy housing aid, student loan forgiveness, food stamps, free birth control, government retirement plans, universal internet service, medical insurance, and that’s just for starters. If all of that doesn’t cut it, there is always welfare for those who need it—and often for those who do not. The percentage of Americans paying the tab for this utopian state of affairs is shrinking and the growing number of people supposedly “benefiting” threaten to change the dynamics of politics and government.

"Last week, the Romney campaign finally took the Obama administration to task for weakening requirements in the popular bipartisan 1996 welfare reform, which allows states to waive work requirement as a condition of receiving welfare. In July, using a request by a number of governors seeking more flexibility in welfare management, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius issued a memorandum in July allowing the work requirements to be stripped.

"According to a recent Rasmussen poll, even today, 83 percent of Americans surveyed support such requirements."

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