Tuesday, May 31, 2011
AP: Gov. Susana Martinez Plans to Cut Food Assistance to Elderly, Disabled
If you're following the mean-spirited and misguided actions of New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez and her supporters, you know it just keeps getting worse and worse. Today, the AP is reporting that the Martinez administration is proposing to end a program on July 1st that provides food assistance for about 4,000 low-income elderly and disabled New Mexicans. Martinez plans to end a state program that supplements federal food stamp benefits for the elderly and disabled to ensure they get at least $25 a month in assistance. No, I'm not kidding. It's that bad:
"As you can imagine, $12 a month for these households can mean a lot of food," said Patricia Anders, an attorney for the New Mexico Center on Law and Poverty. "That can be a whole basket, including whole grain bread, a dozen eggs, a box of cereal, a gallon of milk, a pound of apples, some frozen vegetables and some tuna. That's what we're taking away from the plates of our elderly, seniors and disabled folks every month by cutting this program."
In response, Scott Forrester, Executive Director of the Democratic Party of New Mexico, released the following statement.
"Cutting food assistance to the elderly poor during tough economic times is not a value shared by New Mexican's and the Martinez administration needs to stop this act of cruelty. From the Ryan budget that imperils Social Security and Medicare to this blatant attack on New Mexico's poor, New Mexicans are starting to see that Susana Martinez and the Republicans don't care one bit about the plight of our most vulnerable citizens during these tough times."
"Martinez had an opportunity to preserve these benefits for our struggling seniors, but chose not to take it. She could have closed a wasteful tax loophole that lets wealthy companies hide their profits. Now she's balancing the budget on the backs of the poor."
Just like Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Rick Snyder of Michigan, Paul LePage of Maine and Rick Scott of Florida... Susana Martinez carries out the republican assault on the poor, the jobless, the elderly and disabled people of her state. Big banks pay no taxes, GE made millions and millions in profit and paid zero taxes, the wealthiest 2% continue to benefit from tax breaks on the backs of the middle class and poor. How much more of this is the American people going to take? When will the American people learn that this is classic republican policy, reward the tax dodging CEOs and their companies, reward the already wealthy and punish everyone else. Why do people still vote for republicans...it just baffles me.
So when can New Mexicans start the recall efforts against Martinez?
Posted by: Dana | May 31, 2011 6:27:02 PM
Would someone help me understand who is at fault here? Clicking on the link- AP article- says that the Martinez administration requested funding to continue the program, but that the Legislature failed to pass the funding?
Now I am not a fan of Martinez, but it sounds like the Leg dropped the ball? Anybody know more?
This is very sad- $16 in minimal fed aid a month, and the state would add $9 for a measly 25 bucks a month in food assistance and we can't afford that? How pathetic are we? The rich get richer and the poor just starve to death. Les Miserable wasn't Paris- it is here in NM!
Posted by: cheryl | May 31, 2011 10:12:00 PM
I think the most eloquent response to the Martinez Administration's eagerness to step into the limelight and take ownership of this Dickensian move is probably:
Posted by: Stuart Heady | May 31, 2011 11:42:23 PM
Martinez did NOT request funding for this within the budget and she is perfectly happy to keep it that way. Wise up people. She made a blanket budget request and her staff decided what money went where.
Posted by: Ian | Jun 1, 2011 1:48:40 AM
Martinez and her republican counterparts in other states are heartless. But is not about having a heart it is about destroying the class of people that can't speak for themselves. The Nazi's had the same play book and it destroyed their country. As long as Democrats and all others that don't agree with these tyrants don't aggressively show our distain for their blatant disrespect for the people we are lost. The republicans have taken over the airwaves. the news papers etc. We must fight and we must be visible. I am always ready to picket at a moments notice are you?
Posted by: Stephanie DuBois | Jun 1, 2011 8:27:24 AM
An attitude within Calvinism, which was popular in New England in the 1700s and early 1800s, is that the poor are being punished by God and we should leave that alone and not interfere. The Elect are being rewarded and we should give those being rewarded more support.
That attitude seems to be coming back. Essentially the message is mostly being preached by special interests for obvious reasons.
Martinez is showing that this has become a cultural element in New Mexico. The question is whether this wakes up those who ought to be supporting the social infrastructure that made the middle class what it once was, and which sustained economic prosperity as well. Or will we go back to making sure that the wealthy are well rewarded by everyone else accepting poverty as just the way it is?
Posted by: Stuart Heady | Jun 1, 2011 10:10:27 AM