CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Rev. Jesse Jackson told The Daily Caller that farmers and grocers “will benefit” from increasing numbers of food stamp recipients in the United States.
Jackson said Tuesday that it’s “morally correct” to provide food stamps, when asked if the record-high 46.7 million recipients is a reflection of President Obama’s leadership.
“The people who would have been malnourished will get assistance. It means that farmers will benefit. The grocers will benefit, and it’s a humane thing to do and as our employment numbers go up, the food stamp numbers will come down and we’ve had an interesting dynamic here where we engaged it two wars, off budget, and the [Bush-era] tax cuts,” Jackson told TheDC at the Democratic National Convention.
Jackson said President George W. Bush’s policies created a “budget hole” which Obama is working to fix.
“We’re steadily coming out of that hole, and I think that the more we come out of the hole the more that the food stamps will go down,” said Jackson.
According to official U.S. Treasury figures, when President George W. Bush took office the total public debt stood at $5.7 trillion. When President Obama was sworn in after Bush’s two terms in office, the debt was $10.6 trillion. The total debt has reached $16.0 trillion.
“Feeding the hungry is the morally correct thing to do when people are malnourished. Suppose we didn’t have food stamps? Suppose we didn’t have Medicaid or Medicare? Providing a safety net for the needy is morally correct and when the economy gets better, those numbers will go down,” Jackson told TheDC.
Jackson also said the American people are better off than they were four years ago.
“Yes, under Bush we lost 4 million jobs. Now we’ve gained 4 million. That’s a swing of 8 million. That’s an upward trajectory and that trajectory must keep going upward. The automotive industry was gone. It’s back now,” he said.
Jackson’s son, Illinois Democratic Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. took a leave of absence from Congress at the end of June. Jackson said his son would not be attending the convention.
“Not likely. He’s working on his health recovery,” Jackson said.