Without the cash and non-cash income provided by programs such as Social Security, SNAP (formerly food stamps), and the Earned Income Tax Credit:
- The share of Americans below the poverty line in 2004 ($19,307 for a family of four) would have more than doubled, from 13.5 percent to 29 percent. That is, 45 million more Americans would have been poor.
- The share of Americans in “deep poverty,” with incomes below half the poverty line, would have more than tripled, to 21 percent.
- The share of Americans who are poor or near-poor, with incomes below one-and-a-half-times the poverty line, would have risen to about 40 percent.