Food stamps for pot! Colo. Democrats fight to keep food-stamp cash in marijuana stores

Not even pot dealers think dispensing food-stamp cash at marijuana stores is a good idea – but Colorado Democrats do.

Denver Dems have shot down a Republican plan to ban food stamp EBT cards from being used at cash machines in the state’s newly legal pot stores, griping that some groups might not be able to access ATMs anywhere but the local cannabis outlet.

The cards’ use at ATMs in liquor stores, gun stores or casinos is already forbidden. But using food stamp cards for cash in a pot shop is OK?

“I just don’t understand,” state Sen. Bernie Herpin told the Associated Press.  “People who are using their food stamp money to buy marijuana — why we should be making it easier for them?”

Herpin is the Republican who replaced former state Senate President John Morse, who was ousted in a recall election over the state’s gun-control laws.

The organization that represents dope dealers doesn’t want the cards being used at ATMs in their stores either.

Since food stamps are federal money administered by the states, letting food stamp cards be used for withdrawals from ATMs in pot shops might bring federal regulators around the marijuana stores, which are illegal under federal law.

“That’s not something that anybody in the cannabis industry would welcome, obviously,” Jason Warf, a board member of the Colorado Springs Medical Cannabis Council, told the AP.

The bill died on a 3-2 committee vote. Dems arguing against it  said the only available ATM a food stamp recipient could get to might be in a pot shop.

Besides, one Democrat suggested, never in the history of food stamps has one penny been spent on something other than food.

“If you’ve ever known anyone who has been on cash assistance, like I have, it’s not something you abuse,” Sen. Jessie Ulibarri.

Never.

Colorado’s dope dealers have more sense than its Democrats.

H/T: The Daily Caller

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Joe Saunders

Joe Saunders, a 25-year newspaper veteran, is a staff writer and editor for BizPac Review who lives in Tallahassee and covers capital and Florida politics. Email Joe at jpjsaunders@gmail.com.
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About Joe Saunders

Joe Saunders, a 25-year newspaper veteran, is a staff writer and editor for BizPac Review who lives in Tallahassee and covers capital and Florida politics. Email Joe at jpjsaunders@gmail.com.

  • hoppyman52

    EBT cards should be restricted for use in grocery stores only, the idea you can go to an ATM for cash is disturbing to say the least. The system is set up for corruption.

  • Leende

    Hope the children who depend on welfare for their food parents aren’t pot heads or they will go hungry.

  • Kelly Wilson

    But you can’t get cash from food stamp funds. This is a total lie.

    • Julie Jenkins

      This is the problem with comments from people who don’t know how the system works. The EBT card holds both food stamp benefits and cash benefits. The cash can be withdrawn at any ATM. This is the issue.

    • Steven Welcome

      Well they can I have seen them do this they go to the store buy bunch of food then go back to customer service and returned back stuff but here thing they can’t put money back on card so they have to give cash to them and that just mes sed up

  • Donna Smith

    I know of people who use their foodstamp to buy all sorts of things other than food, even trade them for drugs. People who really need them can’t get them and other people who spend their money on drugs and such get foodstamps/and such, use it for everything except to feed their children.
    another thing….Why do some people get every hand-out known to man and people think that we sould do more for them?, While others for some reason or another need a little help and can’t get anything?
    I have a personal story about this as an example. I got married at a VERY young age (still married to the same man, almost 32 years) and my husband is a truck driver and well he got stuck out on the road a while longer than he was supposed to and me and my 3 kids where home alone and the food ran rather short. My neighbor came over and saw this and suggested we go to our local Food Pantry for help. They would not so much give me a loaf of bread unless I went to sign up for foodstamps. I explained that I only needed it this one time but they still wouldn’t help me. ….And no I did not apply for foodstamps.
    With the helping hand of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and my friends we didn’t starve.

  • djmdgo

    Dems once again and again show their complete and utter stupidity!

    • Sosyalis

      Except for the fact there is no such thing as cash food stamp benefits. One can never go to an ATM machine with their EBT (Food Stamp) card and withdraw cash. The only way to gain cash for benefits is to sell the benefits to another individual, which is fraud and punishable by fine, imprisonment and losing the benefits, generally forever due to new rules for trafficking Food Stamp benefits (brought to you by the liberal USDA in 2013).
      Who looks stupid now?

      • Eric Johnson

        Then why are the Colorado politicians having this argument? Dems are being quoted as wanting to allow ATMs that dispense cash to be usable by EBT card holders. That contradicts what you say.

        • Sosyalis

          In most states EBT cards have a cash feature, similar to a debit card, as well as food stamps on the card. The cash can be from child support payments received by the card holder, TANF cash assistance and disability benefits. If the problem is people accessing their cash from ATM’s located in marijuana stores, then that should be the argument, rather than one more attempt to demonize food stamp recipients.

          • Julie Jenkins

            Yes cash assistance goes on the EBT card. Child support usually not (maybe in some states) and disability is either a mailed check or direct deposit. But cash assistance goes on the card. The card can be used at any ATM to withdraw that cash, this is where the problem is. The LA Times ran a story years ago about millions being withdrawn off EBTs at casinos across the state. This was cash from state benefits given to families to help with the bills that was being gambled away. This is why they are also blocked from being used in liquor and gun stores. It makes it easier to not admit what the money is really being spent on.

      • Julie Jenkins

        Actually there is cash assistance- AFDC (Aid to Families with Dependent Children) and that money also goes on the EBT card. This was once sent in the mail as a check along with the food stamps, but technology puts it all on that card. It can be used at any ATM to withdraw the cash, and in any business that accepts EBT for the cash too.When someone buys a cart full of groceries and includes toilet paper, beer, and smokes that portion is drawn out of their cash benefits not their food stamps. (Who looks stupid now?)

        • Sosyalis

          I would have to reply that those who claim people are cashing in their food stamps to buy pot(and those who support that argument)are the ones who look stupid now.

          • Julie Jenkins

            Still you as you claim there is no way you can take your EBT card to an ATM and withdraw cash. Calling it food stamp cash benefits isn’t right, but there is cash benefits on EBT cards that can be withdrawn at an ATM.

  • Fiji’s Best

    Since each of us has unique intellect, talents, and experience, the only way to make us all equal is to treat each of us unequally.

  • jupitersinclair

    The “news” article that Republicans fell for in Colorado is a SATIRE. You cannot use food stamps to buy pot in Colorado.
    http://poorasfolk.wordpress.com/2014/01/23/no-you-cant-use-food-stamps-to-buy-pot-in-colorado/

  • Sonnera

    This article is so ridiculous, its amazing. 1. There is no such thing as food stamp “cash”. You cannot withdrawal cash from your food stamp card in any way or fashion: not from cash back at the grocery store, not from an ATM, nothing. You can only use EBT (food stamp) cards to purchase unprepared foods at an approved locations. 2. If your card happens to have both food stamps AND cash benefit assistance on it (2 separate things), All stores and locations have to be approved before they can accept EBT food or allow you to withdrawal your cash benefits (WHICH AGAIN, IS A SEPARATE PROGRAM FROM FOOD STAMPS). 3.The people in this article and the senators are talking about cash benefits, not food stamps in the first place, so they need to get their references and facts straight, because it sounds ridiculous. 4. What difference does it make if a person is withdrawing cash benefits at an ATM near a pot store, or far from a pot store? Where is the indication they are spending any money IN a pot store? I am pretty sure the answer is none, which is why this a bullshit, useless topic to even be discussing. Oh, but these politicians are really worried about jobs and wanna talk about that? Why don’t they actually start doing that then instead of wasting time.

  • Aaron Barnes

    the EBT cards should have the name of the holder and a picture of them on it like some debt cards do and the holder has to show id to the cashier to make sure that the person who using it is the holder and if not that person and the person the card belongs to will be fine and can be remove from that benefit and the cards shouldnt have cash back