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Mayor On Food Stamps Cory Booker Uses Twitter To Battle Critics

mayor on food stamps cory booker

Mayor on food stamps Cory Booker is a strong champion for his city, Newark, but the young lawmaker isn’t just content to accept the challenges he faces in governance alone.

As we reported earlier, the Newark mayor is on food stamps, but not due to fiscal hardship — Booker instead is willingly living in the poverty-like conditions for a week after a Twitter debate with fellow user and ardent detractor of the Supplemental Food Assistance Program, or SNAP, @MWadeNC.

The woman started the “mayor on food stamps” challenge when she and Booker went head to head over whether food stamps were a necessary program to feed struggling families or a government-provided luxury for people who don’t work hard enough to keep food on the table.

Since the “mayor on food stamps” challenge went viral, Booker has commented on attitudes like that of @MWadeNC, saying that ignorance about poverty and hunger in America led to comments like the ones made by the woman he challenged to the week on SNAP allocations.

Booker said:

“You can see from the twitter discussion that people have a real lack of understanding of the struggles that many families have to go through — hard working families that play by the rules.”

Booker added that he had hoped that by assuming the challenge, he could use his “mayor on food stamps” status to open the eyes of people like the woman with which he was debating about the reality of living on food stamps versus their stereotypes:

“One of my main goals will be to shine light on programs like this and dispel stereotypes that exist … As The Star-Ledger reported, more than 10 percent of New Jerseyans are working hard and playing by the rules but in this economy it’s still not enough.”

The challenge sparked off when Booker replied to the woman, in the following exchange:

As of now, it would seem that the anonymous Twitter user is waiting on contact from Booker’s people, as she has repeatedly tweeted that she has yet to receive details from Booker or a rep:

But unless @MWadeNC is getting cold feet about the reality of living on SNAP benefits, it seems the mayor of Newark will indeed be on food stamps for a week to raise awareness.

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31 Responses to “Mayor On Food Stamps Cory Booker Uses Twitter To Battle Critics”

  1. Anonymous

    A right-wing know-nothing cannot back up her insane ravings with credible action? This should be no more surprising than the Sun rising in the east. If Mayor Booker's actions actually do elevate some ignoramuses to the point where they understand American social services are far from luxurious, this will be a good thing. However, proponents of cutthroat economics usually don't care one little bit about reality, seeing as it uniformly contradicts their precious ideology. I'm not optimistic this noble act will successfully educate any among those voters most in need of facing hard truths.

  2. Bob Harlec

    Reality is these programs NEED to be phased out. Stop the social handouts. Enough is enough.Give people dignity not false hope.

  3. Kim LaCapria

    I have a theory. I believe many who espouse this ideology like to plan for the best instead of all scenarios, and believe that in doing so, it negates the possibility of hardship coming to pass. Witness: Romney's reaction when he lost.

  4. Steffanie Printz Carter

    10% are playing by the rules and it still isn't enough. What % are on food stamps and what % aren't playing by the rules that is my question. I have no problem with food stamps but I really see alot of abuse, and people who really need them are not always getting them, our government needs so way to catch people using the system, and there needs to be a limit on how long someone can be on food stamps.

  5. Tony Cardinal

    THEY HAVE NOT SAID WHAT CRITERIA IS BEING USED TO DETERMINE THE AMOUNT OF FOOD STAMPS HE WILL RECIEVE! IF BASED ON INCOME, HE SHOULD GET ZIP, AS MOST SENIORS BARELY GET JUST OVER TEN BUCKS A MONTH IN FOOD STAMPS AND THEIR INCOME FROM SOCIAL SECURITY IS IN THE POVERTY LEVEL STANDARDS!

  6. Tony Cardinal

    THEY HAVE NOT SAID WHAT CRITERIA IS BEING USED TO DETERMINE THE AMOUNT OF FOOD STAMPS HE WILL RECIEVE! IF BASED ON INCOME, HE SHOULD GET ZIP, AS MOST SENIORS BARELY GET JUST OVER TEN BUCKS A MONTH IN FOOD STAMPS AND THEIR INCOME FROM SOCIAL SECURITY IS IN THE POVERTY LEVEL STANDARDS!

  7. Carey Pierce

    Yes, because taking away somebody's ability to put food on the table to feed their family is a fantastic way to give them dignity. You do realize that in some cases(a majority of them) that people who are on Food Stamps are on them because they make such little money they need the help, don't you? Shame on you Bob.

  8. Tiffiny Schaefer

    Its not about the government being responsible for our kids nutrition, its about people like myself that work a full time 40 an hour week job and make the california minimume wage of $8.00 per hour, after the government takes thier taxes and not to mension thier rediculous over priced parking ticket garnishment of $1000.00 which leaves me with a measly $260.00 a week to live on. By the way I'm a single mother with two children my rent is $600.00 a month for a one bedroom getto apartment. Don't forget electricity, gas, and dollar store toiletries, such as toilet paper, shampoo, and bar soap…. Do the math… DO YOU THINK THE GOVERNMENT IS RESPONSIBLE? By the way I have worked for the same company for 5 years and there is no law that says your boss has to give you a raise SO I HAVEn't GOT ONE IN 5 YEARS… And I have two certificates of completion for training as a customer account executive for two very repitable companies. And have applied to at least 300 better paying jobs over the ast 5 YEARS, after having my resume overviewed by several job search orginizations. AND NOT ONE CALL FROM ANY COMPANY! DO YOU THINK THE GOVERNMENT IS RESPONSIBLE?

  9. Kristen Aleksich

    If Mayor Booker is Mayor, he is not going to be eligible for Food Assistance. He makes too much money. Is he going to quit his job for "one week" to be on FA? Not to mention the program is monthly & not weekly. Mr. Booker should probably educate himself a little more before saying he is just going to go on "Food Stamps", but I do appreciate the fact he is advocating for the progam & not against it. Children don't deserve to go hungry when mom & dad can't put food on the table.

  10. Alex Erwin

    It must be nice up there in that ivory tower you live in Bob. Many families continue to work and still receive food stamps. Are you saying it is a handout for people who are working? Sounds a bit elitist to me

  11. Joe Nalley

    I just saw the headlines.. I bet his president is real proud of him for getting on food stamps.. I guess within another 4 years EVERYBODY will be on them

  12. Katrena Greene

    In my opinion the very poor get assistance and the very rich get tax breaks but middle class people get no assistance or tax breaks. I personally feel that the rich people should not be receiving all the perks, we need more jobs so, that less people will be on assistance, and health care needs to be affordable.

  13. Shawn Taylor

    Several rabbis here took this challenge recently and just used the state guidelines for family size, etc to determine their eligibility and limited themselves to that amount. Probably he'd do something alone those lines.

  14. Tiffiny Schaefer

    Tiffiny Schaefer · WHATEVER MY BOSS DECIDES AT THE MOMENT at MOTHER (I NEED A ENERGY DRINK)/Office Personel (this one pays a little)
    Its not about the government being responsible for our kids nutrition, its about people like myself that work a full time 40 an hour week job and make the california minimume wage of $8.00 per hour, after the government takes thier taxes and not to mension thier rediculous over priced parking ticket garnishment of $1000.00 which leaves me with a measly $260.00 a week to live on. By the way I'm a single mother with two children my rent is $600.00 a month for a one bedroom getto apartment. Don't forget electricity, gas, and dollar store toiletries, such as toilet paper, shampoo, and bar soap…. Do the math… DO YOU THINK THE GOVERNMENT IS RESPONSIBLE? By the way I have worked for the same company for 5 years and there is no law that says your boss has to give you a raise SO I HAVEn't GOT ONE IN 5 YEARS… And I have two certificates of completion for training as a customer account executive for two very repitable companies. And have applied to at least 300 better paying jobs over the ast 5 YEARS, after having my resume overviewed by several job search orginizations. AND NOT ONE CALL FROM ANY COMPANY! DO YOU THINK THE GOVERNMENT IS RESPONSIBLE?

  15. Kim LaCapria

    Sweetheart, he doesn't actually have to get food stamps to do this. The idea is he lives on the amount he would be eligible for were he within the working poor. It is A Thing.

  16. Kim LaCapria

    You can't be serious, Joe. He's not ACTUALLY going on food stamps. He is just pledging to spend a week living on that amount of money. Stunning.

  17. Amanda McAdoo

    This was done here in Alaska buy a group of political men in Juneau. I personally think this is a waste. One week on food stamps is not enough time to feel the struggle. I and my husband both work, together we make a total of $24.00 dollars an hour for a family of 4, with no health insurance. We do not qualify for food stamps. They need to know what it's like to live paycheck to paycheck….with cashing in your saved change to make it until payday. I pay my bills, mortgage, utilities, car insurance. Then food. How sad is that. I buy my son what he needs first (food) then I worry about the rest of us. Lets see these guys live off 7.50-13.00 dollars an hour and still be able to keep, gas in their car, a roof over their head, and food in their stomach. It's not that we don't all make enough….it's that prices are to high…and WE THE PEOPLE made it that way. Always complaining we don't make enough, so they raise wages, in order to raise wages, prices have to go up somewhere right? People need to get over themselves are start to see things for what they are.

  18. Kristen Aleksich

    "Sweetheart" I work for the Government agency that issues Food Assistance (no longer called Food Stamps). This man is stating he is going on FA for one week. One would assume that he is going to receive this assistance. If he is going to live on this budget for one week (which still makes no sense seems how it is a monthly allotment) then this article is misleading.

  19. Tammy Ann

    Watched a heartbreaking show on PBS about hunger in America – from childrens point of view…

  20. Heath M Cooper

    Funny how ppl miss the point that this benefit is meant to be a supplement in a household's budgeting for food. Not to be the only funds devoted towards groceries.

  21. Kristen Aleksich

    I guess it does say that he is just going to live in "poverty like" conditions & not be on the benefit. Yes, it is meant to supplement your income & not be your only means to buy food. People don't get that at all. Wait until the job requirements come back for this program. It will be interesting!