Cuts in the food stamp program take effect today, a 5 percent cut in money for food for the record number now participating in the supplemental nutrition program.

It gives a very literal meaning to tightening belts.

Stateline helpfully provided a state-by-state look at the impact:



Participants: 501,000
Percent of population: 17 percent
Average monthly allotment: $278
Total cut in spending: $52 million
Children affected: 232,000
Elderly affected: 91,000

U.S. Rep. Tom Cotton can explain why this is a good thing, so far as it goes, but that the cuts need to go much deeper.