House Republicans Introduce Bill To Roll Back Calorie Counts in School Lunches

First Lady talks with children about healthy eating
First Lady talks with children about healthy eating

What's the most pressing thing for Reps. Steve King (R-IA) and Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) right now? Jobs? The economy? No, not those, not even working out some Machiavellian scheme to put oil wells on top of every mosque and gay bar in the country. Nope, it's rolling back the 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, which imposed calorie limits on school lunches.

Food Safety News reports today on the "No Hungry Kids Act" that was introduced last week, which would "eliminate new limits on the number of calories in the school lunches served to 32 million American school children each day." The bill seeks to reverse the calorie limits set by the 2010 law, which limited school meals to 650 calories for meals for kindergarten through fifth grade, 700 calories for seventh and eighth grade and 850 calories for high school. The rules were based on recommendations from experts at the Institute of Medicine.

Rep. King is quoted in the article as saying "Parents know that their kids deserve all of the healthy and nutritious food they want." Both representatives refer repeatedly to First Lady Michelle Obama, who was a huge champion of the 2010 law as part of her fight against childhood obesity. The phrase "nanny state" is often invoked as well. Which is kind of funny, because a nanny is someone who looks after your kids ... just like the public school system! And if you're going to have a nanny, then wouldn't you want a nanny who cares about nutrition?

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