This Chart Blows Up the Myth of the Welfare Queen

The “Welfare Queen” Doesn’t Exist

A chart for the next time a conservative criticizes welfare recipients for buying crab cakes and Cadillacs

by The Atlantic, December 18, 2013

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This Chart Blows Up the Myth of the Welfare Queen

This Chart Blows Up the Myth of the Welfare Queen

Here's a useful graph to keep handy for the next time Fox News airs a report about food stamp users buying lobster with their benefits. This month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics compared yearly spending between families that use public assistance programs, such as food stamps and Medicaid, and families that don't. And surprise, surprise, households that rely on the safety net lead some pretty frugal lifestyles.

On average, they spend $30,582 in a year, compared to $66,525 for families not on public assistance. Meanwhile, they spend a third less on food, half as much on housing, and 60 percent less on entertainment.

 
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