House bill would allow drug testing for food stamps

Mary Clare Jalonick
Associated Press

Washington — A key Republican is renewing a GOP push to allow drug tests for low-income food stamp recipients.

Alabama Rep. Robert Aderholt unveiled the legislation on Thursday. The bill is an attempt to support such efforts in states like Wisconsin, where Republican Gov. Scott Walker has sought to require food stamp recipients to undergo drug screening. Walker’s administration filed suit against the Agriculture Department, which has said federal law bars the practice.

The government says states cannot impose new standards of eligibility under the law, and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has said drug testing recipients is intrusive and ineffective.

Aderholt is the chairman of the House subcommittee that oversees spending for the Agriculture Department, which administers the food stamp program.