Welfare reform is back.In 1996, President Bill Clinton ended welfare as we know it, implementing work requirements (or evidence that one is looking for work) to be eligible for welfare. The days of dependency would be over, we were told.
And it was a huge step in the right direction. The reform sharply reduced the number of people enrolling in welfare programs, and helped move many of those on government assistance to work. Since work is the best anti-poverty program in the world, the reform naturally led to a decrease in rates of poverty. The biggest beneficiaries were the children of the poor, as by 2003, roughly 3 million fewer children lived in poverty than in 1995, including 1.2 million fewer black children, marking what the Heritage Foundation described as having brought forth “the lowest level of black child poverty in the nation’s history.”
Barack Obama deserved plenty of credit for gutting welfare reform during his administration, granting the states the option to waive their work for welfare requirements, which led to skyrocketing usage. States that have re-implemented their work requirements have seen precipitous drop-offs in welfare use among their able bodied residents. President Donald Trump is going to make sure it’s all states that end up re-implementing those work requirements.
According to LifeZette, it’s time for America to get up off the couch, at least according to President Donald Trump and his budget team.The president is proposing the most ambitious welfare reform since the 1990s, focusing on requiring able-bodied adults who don’t have children to work in order to receive food stamps.
The work requirement in the president’s 2018 budget will save a whopping $190 billion over the next ten years, according to the Office of Management and Budget, and is part of a larger plan to reform welfare in America.
“We must reform our welfare system so that it does not discourage able-bodied adults from working, which takes away scarce resources from those in real need. Work must be the center of our social policy,” the president wrote in his letter to Congress accompanying his proposed budget.Not only will the work requirement shave $190 in spending, it’ll decrease the unemployed population (thus expanding the tax base), among many other benefits. For a fantastic summary of what happened the last time we implemented work for welfare, watch the video below, courtesy of the Daily Signal:
[Note: This post was written by Matt Palumbo. He is a co-author of the new book A Paradoxical Alliance: Islam and the Left, and can be found on Twitter @MattPalumbo12]