Urging our nation's leaders to end hunger

Hunger Doesn’t Discriminate Based on Party Affiliation

120126-SNAPDespite perceptions and suggestions to the contrary, we know that the circumstances that lead people and families to enroll in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly food stamps) don’t discriminate based on race. And as we profiled earlier, an ever-growing number of families on the program are working.

Add this: Though a breakdown of participation based on political affiliation doesn’t exist to our knowledge, we have no reason to believe that people struggling in this economy are disproportionately Democrats, Republicans, or otherwise. Consider the story of Susie, a 59-year-old Florida woman who lost her business during the recession:

"I am a Republican and a conservative ... and I had to swallow my pride today and come in and apply for benefits for the first time because I'm losing weight," Susie said. 

Even if you brush the moral case for SNAP aside, candidates ought to take note of the sheer political calculus that there’s a growing proportion of the American electorate for whom SNAP is the difference between having just barely enough to eat and going hungry. 

Matt-newell-chingMatt Newell-Ching is a regional organizer at Bread for the World.



Photo caption: Alex Morris feeds her son, André, in their Bend, OR, home. Alex depends on SNAP, WIC and other programs to care for André, who suffers from a serious medical condition that affects his hormonal system. Photo by Brad Horn for Bread for the World.

+Learn more about SNAP and how you can take action.


« Gabriel Salguero: What Do Latino Evangelical Voters Want? Amelia Kegan on the Role of Poverty in the Upcoming Elections »


Thanks for making such an important non-political point at a time when every issue is viewed only through a political prism. Our leaders, more isolated and removed than ever before from how real people live their lives, tend to forget that there are human beings behind every statistic.It's too bad that the sponsors of the presidential debates don't save one podium for Bread for the World's David Beckmann so that elements of factual and moral importance can be represented amidst the bluff and bluster of the candidates!

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