BIDEN ECONOMY: Middle Class Turning to Food Banks as Inflation Spirals Out of Control

WASHINGTON– Heads of food banks and non-profits throughout the United States say they are struggling to keep up with demand as the cost of groceries, fuel prices and other goods are leading first time recipients, many identified as middle class, to turn to these resources for help.

“Lines are getting longer at food pantries. Demand for food assistance is growing. And that is certainly putting a strain on the emergency food system,” Kyle Waide, president and CEO of the Atlanta Community Food Bank told the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

A report published last week by the Bureau of Labor Statistics stated that with inflation rates at a 40-year high, middle and working class Americans are struggling to survive.

Matt Pieper, the executive director of the food nonprofit Open Hand Atlanta, and Board president of Georgia Meals on Wheels State Association told the Constitution that the number of calls he gets in a day from people who are seeking food assistance has nearly tripled.

“There isn’t a program that I’ve talked with throughout the state that isn’t seeing an increase in demand for services, as inflation has skyrocketed and as the cost of fuel has skyrocketed,” said Pieper, whose organization provides about 5,500 meals a day.

“We’re feeding more seniors than we ever have before, because more seniors are accessing services because they’re running out of money,” he said.

According to the report published by the BLS, more than 18 million Americans sometimes didn’t have enough to eat last month and more than 5 million people often went hungry.

In May, food prices were 11.9% higher than in May of 2021, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture

The government’s consumer price index soared 9.1% over the past year, the biggest yearly increase since 1981, with nearly half of the increase due to higher energy costs.

REPORT: Biden Approval Rating Hits New Low Amid Soaring Gas Prices, Inflation

WASHINGTON (The Hill) — A new NBC News poll shows President Biden’s job approval rating has dipped to another low, with just 39 percent of Americans approving of the job he’s doing and 56 percent disapproving.

Americans are dinging the president on inflation, the economy and border security, as they have been for much of his presidency. Only 37 percent of Americans view Biden in a positive light, according to the poll, which shows his favorability rating hovers around the same percentage currently as former President Trump’s.

Biden appears to have lost ground once again after making some gains. Earlier this month, 42 percent of Americans approved of Biden’s job in a Washington Post-ABC News poll, which was up 5 percentage points from a previous poll in February.

In the NBC News poll, 59 percent of Americans approve of Biden’s handling of the coronavirus, where the president has consistently earned the best marks.

But only 33 percent of Americans approve of his handling of the economy, and only 23 percent approve of his handling of inflation and the cost of living, two issues that are likely to be among the most important at the ballot box in November.

Gas prices have surged to record highs this year, topping an average national price of $4.47 per gallon, while prices at grocery stores have also seen steep increases. Last week, reports of a shortage of baby formula triggered another round of anguish among American families.

About 41 percent of Americans say they are “somewhat satisfied” with their current financial situation, according to the poll, with 16 percent saying they are very dissatisfied with their financial situation.

Americans rank cost of living, the economy, voting rights and abortion in that order as the top four issues facing the nation.

The poll was conducted from May 5 to May 7 and then May 9 to May 10 among 1,000 respondents. The margin of error is 3 percentage points.


The Hill’s Brad Dress contributed to the contents of this report.