In another stunning legislative maneuver, Michigan Republicans passed a bill last night (attached as an amendment to an appropriations measure) that provides Michigan grocery store clerks may refuse to accept Food Stamps (under the Federal Government's Supplemental Nutritional Assistance program or SNAP as it is more commonly known) for payment of qualifying purchases if they have "moral objections" or believe that accepting food stamps as payment for food is a "matter of conscience." Furthermore, the clerks may not be fired by or otherwise penalized by their employers for refusing to accept food stamps or other means of federal food assistance such as EBT cards. The Obama administration has refused to make an announcement regarding the legislation until Governor Snyder signs the Bill into law, which he is expected to do later today. However, several activist organization have indicated they intend to file lawsuits to overturn the legislation.
A separate bill expected to come to a vote today proposes to remove charitable status from shelters and soup kitchens that provide meals to the homeless, as well as local food banks. Sponsors of the bill say they believe they have the necessary votes needed to pass the legislation before adjournment.