Waste of the food stamp program is at an all time low and Fox is saying that it isn’t true when it isn’t. They want to attack the program only to hurt the Obama administration. But Obama has better thing to worry about than a fake news network. But the program has achieved the lowest payment error rate in its history in the most recently available data. Fox News complained about the findings of a report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on quality control in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), previously known as food stamps. The USDA report clearly states that the 2012 fiscal year was “another year of excellent performance in payment accuracy” before noting that the most recent payment error rate of 3.42 percent was once again “the lowest National payment error rate in the history of SNAP.”
On the July 24 edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends, co-host Brian Kilmeade cast the findings in a negative light, stressing that “the government is overpaying on food stamps by about $2 billion.” Co-host Steve Doocy then questioned whether the Obama administration could “be trusted with more money,” given the overpayments. Fox Business anchor Stuart Varney went on to chastise the Department of Agriculture for labeling the food-stamp payment error rate of 3.42 percent “excellent,” wondering aloud “since when has that been good?” But here are the actually stats so far:
The Bush administration had it the worst. Before the 2008-2009 recession pushed millions of Americans into poverty and boosted participation in government-administered nutritional assistance programs. A February 2014 report from the USDA on characteristics of SNAP households in fiscal year 2012 reveals that participation is indeed up since 2007, but it also says, “Fluctuations in the number of SNAP participants in the last 16 years have been broadly tracked to economic indicators”:
But let Fox have their fun with a “fear” graphic:
If you though Fox News doesn’t get involved in politics, then you are wrong. Carl Cameron who works at Fox as the chief political correspondent will be heading to a political fundraiser and will speak there. This fundraiser is benefiting a group run by former Republican Party officials and linked to controversial industrialists Charles and David Koch. Cameron is a speaker at The Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy’s (JBC) annual Libertas Dinner on July 23. The event will also feature former Gov. Steve Merrill (R-NH) and honor Joe McQuaid, publisher of the Union Leader and “GOP Kingmaker in New Hampshire.” Sponsorship levels run from $100 to $10,000.
But for Cameron won’t get paid. Cameron joined Fox News in 1996 and serves as its chief political correspondent. His duties include reporting on political campaigns, including from New Hampshire. He was previously the political director for New Hampshire’s WMUR-TV.
The group’s website features conservative policy prescriptions carrying headlines such as “Minimum Wage Hike Will Hurt Entry Level Workers Most”; “Obamacare’s problems are more than just a website”; and “Medicaid Expansion is Bad Medicine for New Hampshire.”
JBC is linked to the Kochs through the Charles Koch Institute, which lists the New Hampshire group as a “partner organization” for its summer fellow program.
The group’s funding has also been a source of controversy due to its connection to the Koch brothers, as noted by Granite State Progress and the Center for Media and Democracy. The Nashua Telegraph noted(subscription required) in December that progressive groups had found that JBC was funded by “the Donors Capital Fund with nearly $500,000 in grants since 2009 that at times made up 56 percent of Josiah Bartlett’s financing. The Koch Brothers have financially supported the Donors Capital Fund.” The Donors Capital Fund, along with its affiliated group Donors Trust, acts as a “dark-money ATM” for conservatives groups from wealthy individuals like the Kochs.
The Center has denied receiving financial support from the Koch brothers. Telegraph reported that “Arlinghaus said he was unaware of where the Donors Capital Fund got its support but likened it to the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation. ‘If the Koch Brothers did support it, we wouldn’t know that and we wouldn’t care … Our donors by and large are conservatives philosophically. That may come as a great shock to Granite State Progress but it’s nothing we’ve hidden or should be a surprise to anyone who’s paid attention.”
Media Matters documented how 15 Fox News hosts and contributors have recently campaigned with two political organizations (Americans for Prosperity and Americans for Prosperity Foundation) created and heavily funded by the Kochs.
If a plane crashes, it’s related to Benghazi. If a plane goes missing, it’s related to Benghazi. If there is going to be the first openly gay NFL player, it’s related to Benghazi. That’s not true. It’s only true if it’s taught at the school of right-wing stupidity. But Republican idiots such as Rush Limbaugh, Katie Pavlich, and Eric Erickson think so. This form of exploitation has become commonplace among right-wing talking heads, who have repeatedly attempted to link Benghazi to a variety of unrelated events such as the Chris Christie bridge scandal, Yom Kippur, Monday Night Football, openly gay NFL prospect Michael Sam, the weather, and even the still-missing Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370. But this has allowed them to have opportunity.
Radio host Rush Limbaugh took aim at Obama’s response to the plane crash by linking it to the administration’s response to the Benghazi attacks. Criticizing Obama for not taking a harsher stance toward Russia and the pro-Russia rebels who reportedly shot down the plane, Limbaugh alleged on his July 21 show, “If we’re not going to take action against Benghazi … we’re not going to take action here.”
Responding to Obama’s July 21 statement on Ukraine and the downed plane, Fox News contributor and Townhall.com editor Katie Pavlich tweeted:
Obama will get to the bottom of the plane shoot down, just as he did for Benghazi, IRS, etc etc etc—
Katie Pavlich (@KatiePavlich) July 21, 2014
Fox News contributor and RedState.com editor Erick Erickson responded to Obama’s initial statement on the plane crash on July 17 by invoking the inflammatory anti-Islam video linked to the 2012 Benghazi attacks. He tweeted:
Thankfully the President didn’t blame a YouTube video.—
Erick Erickson (@EWErickson) July 17, 2014
None of this makes sense or will make sense. Ever!
It hurts when you try to debunk and explain their stupidity.