The mayor of Newark, New Jersey, Cory Booker has vowed to live on food stamps for one week. USA Today reported that Booker challenged one of his Twitter followers to live off the monetary equivalent food stamps for a week and he said he would start after Thanksgiving.
From Dec. 4 to 11, Booker will take the challenge, The Associated Press reported, just after the ribbon cutting for a new loft development in Newark. Each meal with be at most $1.40.
The exchange occurred on Twitter between Booker and a woman from North Carolina. The woman's Twitter handle is @MWadeNC. She spoke with the AP anonymously and told the news service that she was unhappy that the mayor picked the dates before consulting her. She said to the AP, "I don't think it's fair to be challenged and just find out from the Internet when I'm supposed to take part. I would have appreciated the consideration that I have a life as well."
She added to the AP that she still would participate for at least a week.
USA Today reported the Twitter exchange started when he posted the following quote from Plutarch, a Greek historian, ""An imbalance between rich and poor is the oldest and most fatal ailment of all republics."
@MWadeNC responded, "nutrition is not a responsibility of the government."
Booker responded, "we have a shared responsibility that kids go to school nutritionally ready 2 learn."
He then created the Food stamp challenge, and MWadeNC accepted.
USA Today reported that The University of Bridgeport in Connecticut offered to oversee the challenge and they are staging a food stamp challenge of their on own in December.
In New Jersey, the average food stamp allowance in 2011 was $133.26 per month, per person, reported the AP.