Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Statement by the President Upon Signing Bill Extending the Food Stamp Program.

October 08, 1968

I HAVE SIGNED today a bill that will carry us far toward our goal of protecting every American against hunger or malnutrition-the Food Stamp Act amendments of 1968. This bill not only extends this vital program for 3 years, but it calls for a substantial increase in expenditures to meet the tragedy of hunger in America.

A nation as rich and as productive as ours can guard its young against mental or physical damage caused by malnutrition. A nation whose agriculture can produce enough food to help millions of starving people abroad can meet the needs of the few in our midst who do not have enough to eat. The only question is whether it has the will to assure that no American is compelled to go hungry in this land of plenty. We have come a long way since the idea of a food stamp program was first tested in a few counties in 1961. The program now operates in over 1,000 counties, serving more than 2 1/2 million people. With the funds authorized under this bill, we can move into the 325 more counties that have requested the food stamp program and help a million more people. While this will not completely eliminate all malnutrition in this country, it will take us closer to the day when America can proudly claim that it has no starvation and no serious malnutrition within its borders.

I am proud to sign this measure and I hope the Congress will appropriate the full amount which this bill authorizes.

Note: As enacted, the bill (S. 3068), amending the Food Stamp Act of 1964, is Public Law 90-552 (82 Stat. 958).

Lyndon B. Johnson, Statement by the President Upon Signing Bill Extending the Food Stamp Program. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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