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Flu is serious business

Ohio’s congressional delegation must fight the unjustifiable Trump administration plan to kick millions of Americans — including tens of thousands of Ohioans — off the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), otherwise known as food stamps.

Besides the human costs, the administration’s proposal clearly breaches congressional intent.

If President Donald Trump does succeed, his administration plan would deny food stamp benefits to an estimated 61,081 Ohio households, about 8 percent of the Ohio households now enrolled in the program.

According to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, about 43 percent of Ohio’s food stamp beneficiaries are children. Kicking kids off food stamps would be a travesty that amounts to disinvesting in Ohio’s future.

The Trump plan’s bite would be even bigger nationally, according to Mathematica, a research firm that analyzed SNAP data. Of the 21.5 million American households that now benefit from SNAP, Mathematica estimated that the plan would cut about 1.9 million households from SNAP’s rolls.

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In human terms, the proposed rule would cause cruel and unmerited damage to low-income families and lead more children to go to bed hungry. But in political terms, this attempted administrative end-run around congressional intent is brazen hypocrisy.

Ohio’s congressional delegation needs to defend its prerogatives, as well as its constituents, and demand that the administration withdraw this flawed attempt to undo lawmaking through which Congress has clearly, and repeatedly, expressed its intent.

— The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer