1/3 of Americans Depend on Government for Food


Gingrich was criticized for calling Obama a food stamp president, but it’s a common sense observation that a country where almost a third of the population is literally relying on the government for food is hovering around the margins of being a failed state.

The number of Americans receiving subsidized food assistance from the federal government has risen to 101 million, representing roughly a third of the U.S. population.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that a total of 101,000,000 people currently participate in at least one of the 15 food programs offered by the agency, at a cost of $114 billion in fiscal year 2012.

That means the number of Americans receiving food assistance has surpassed the number of private sector workers in the U.S.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there were 97,180,000 full-time private sector workers in 2012. The population of the U.S. is 316.2 million people, meaning nearly a third of Americans receive food aid from the government.

So we now have more people eating through the government than eating through working. Whatever one may think of the social safety net, those are troubling numbers that indicate the recovery is mythical.



  • CowboyUp

    I wonder what the fraction of obese Americans is, and how many of those are on government food assistance?
    The ‘safety net’ isn’t a net people bounce off of, it’s a web they stick to, welfare is designed that way. Independent self-supporting people don’t have much use for politicians or government, so the democrat party (and too many Republicans) wants as few of those as possible.

    • OfficialPro

      far too many poor people use their money/food stamps for super cheap things like ramen, thus the obesity.

  • trickyblain

    These numbers are a bit misleading. CNS News is adding all the programs together as if every individual in a program is exclusive. For example, if a kid is on the school breakfast program, it’s not a stretch to say that he might be on the lunch program as well. CNS is counting individuals twice — probably more in many instances.

    Also, the implication is that anyone getting assistance is not working. That people couldn’t possibly be in the “private sector” and getting assistance at the same time.


      If you have a full-time job in the private sector – not that likely under the reign of Obama – then you should be supporting yourself, not dependent on Welfare. Welfare benefits should be substantially less than a minimum-wage income, since we should want people to have an incentive to get off welfare. Of course, for the Democrats it’s the opposite: they want as much welfare and as little work as possible, since welfare dependents can be counted on to vote Democratic.

  • Moliminous

    When I performed a high-wire act in the circus, we always had a safety-net beneath us. I fell into its embrace several times. But what distinguished my safety-net from this program is that I could get off… there was an exit. Obama’s plan is not a safety-net, it’s a trap.

  • onecornpone

    1/3 of Americans Depend on Government for Food


    ALL Americans depend on government for food. The U.S. government has pursued a cheap food policy, since the 1930s, and to this day that policy is embraced by our citizens, who can be easily whipped into an unbelievable frenzy by news reporters occasionally going off on a tangent of reportage on rising food prices.

    The demonized “direct payments” to farmers have been a way to compensate producers for government interference in markets, which has enabled our society to benefit by paying less than 10% of our income for food. Did you think that just happened by some accident?

    Cheap food in America has led consumers to be able to live lives the world envies, as well as enable us to afford a wide range of luxury items, I hope you grasp the ramifications of your “conservative” stance toward farm programs… Get ready to give up some of your non-necessities in order to be able to afford your snacks.

    Remember when o-Hugo Jr said “fuel prices will necessarily skyrocket”?

    The same thing is going to happen to food prices, if these statist Chicongo punks can pull it off.