A letter to the editor of the Madison Eagle newspaper

Last November many candidates said they wanted to get elected so that they could do something about jobs. Robert Hurt was one of these candidates.

Representative Hurt has continued to say he cares about creating more jobs, but his actions send a different message – that he doesn’t care about jobs or the people of Madison County.

On July 11, Representative Hurt joined most of his Republican colleagues in the House of Representatives to vote for a Farm Bill that would eliminate the Food Stamp program. Why is this a vote against jobs?

Because our economy does better when people have money to spend. It may seem odd, but one of the most powerful ways to boost the job growth is through the food stamp program.

When working families, disabled veterans, and laid-off workers use food stamps to put food on the table, they are not only working to keep their families healthy, they are buying locally and helping strengthen the local economy.

I support the Food Stamp program because I see how it helps people with low wages take care of themselves and their families.  But you don’t have to be a liberal to value the Food Stamp program.

If you grow food, sell food, or have a local business, you should value the Food Stamp program because of its role in providing you with customers, especially during hard times.

So when Representative Hurt joined his colleagues in the House of Representatives last week to eliminate the food stamp program, he wasn’t just attacking those whose paychecks are a lot smaller than his. He wasn’t just attacking the 960 children and 161 senior citizens in Madison County who rely on food stamps. He was attacking all of the farmers who produce food for sale, and all the local businesses that rely on local spending by local families to survive.

If Representative Hurt really cares about strengthening jobs, he should help, not hurt, the ordinary families whose spending helps sustain their local business community.

Janis Richter
Rochelle, VA 22738