Representative-elect Alan Grayson (D-FL) said Monday that he will put mega-retailer Walmart squarely in his sights during the next Congress for the company’s liberal use of public assistance programs to supplement their workers’ wages.
Speaking to Current TV host Cenk Uygur on Monday’s episode of “The Young Turks,” Grayson called Walmart “the largest recipient of public aid in the country,” saying their low wages force workers to take food stamps, housing assistance and Medicaid just to get by.
“The taxpayer pays for the earned income credit,” he said. “The taxpayer pays for Medicaid. The taxpayer pays for unemployment insurance when they cut hours down. And the taxpayer pays for other forms of public assistance like food stamps. I think the taxpayer is getting fed up of paying these things when, in fact, Walmart could give every employee its got, even the CEO, a 30 percent raise and still be profitable.”
He added that while the health care mandate in the Affordable Care Act will help, “that’s just the start.”
“In state after state after state, Walmart employees represent the largest group of Medicaid recipients, the largest group of food stamp recipients, and taxpayers shouldn’t have to bear that burden,” Grayson said. “It should be Walmart. So, we’re going to take that burden and put it where it belongs: on Walmart.”
It goes even further than this, those Walmart employees who make so little that they need to be on foodstamps more than likely spend their foodstamps at Walmart.
Folks want to complain about people on foodstamps and where their tax money is being spent should take a good hard look at corporations like Walmart who directly benefit from keeping their workers’ wages so low that they need to be on foodstamps to get by.
We are basically subsidizing Walmart’s profits and in more way than one - first by paying their employees shit so their employees have to use public assistance, then by the profits they make on customers shopping with foodstamps.
Why do we villainize people on public assistance without looking at who is actually benefiting from the fact that people have to be on assistance?