POLITICS

Sessions: USDA gets secretive about Mexican food stamp partnership

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,Joel Gehrke

Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., said that the United States Department of Agriculture rejected his request for documents pertaining to its collaboration with the Mexican government to increase the number of Mexican nationals receiving food stamps.

“USDA rebuffed initial requests from my staff to hand over basic documents concerning the Administration’s partnership with Mexico to implement this program,” Sessions said in a statement this afternoon. “I have now laid out in a letter precisely what information USDA needs to turn over. It should be provided at once.”

USDA spokeswoman Alyn Kiel told told The Washington Examiner that agency staff “have been working to pull that information together” for the senator throughout the day.

Sessions also suggested that food stamps are being given to illegal immigrants. “It is also clear that safeguards are lacking to prevent benefits from being extended to those here illegally,” the ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee said, after noting that “for a nation now $16 trillion in debt to ask the Mexican government to help foster dependency on American welfare is extreme financial recklessness.”

But the USDA countered that it “does not perform outreach to immigrants that are undocumented, and therefore not eligible for SNAP.”

Since 2004, Mexican embassies and consulates have coordinated with the U.S. government to explain to Mexican nationals how they can receive food stamps while they live in the country. “USDA and the government of Mexico have entered into a partnership to help educate eligible Mexican nationals living in the United States about available nutrition assistance,” the USDA says in a web page first noticed by The Daily Caller.

 

 

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