Welfare Special Report
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More recent Washington Post editorials, opinion pieces and letters about the changing face of welfare.
Opinion

A selection of recent opinion pieces and editorials on the changing face of welfare from The Washington Post.

Deflecting Welfare Applicants
August 17, 1998
States are moving to keep people off the welfare rolls in the first place. The question is whether the deflections are a good thing or bad. – Editorial

Welfare Reform's Unprecedented Success
August 10, 1998
Changing values and expectations, not a bull market, are moving former welfare recipients to work. – Bill Archer

Off Welfare, On to College
July 15, 1998
Getting off welfare is one thing. Getting out of poverty requires training and education. – Mary D. Janney

Welfare Reform: The Clues Are in Wisconsin
September 23, 1997
When it comes to welfare reform, Republicans like to point to Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson. The problem is that few Republicans listen carefully to what Thompson actually says. – E.J. Dionne, Jr.

Economic Mythmaking
September 3, 1997
The recent welfare drop merely reversed a huge previous run-up. Between 1989 and 1994, the number of welfare recipients jumped 30 percent after years of remarkable stability. – Robert Samuelson

The Welfare Gloss
August 24, 1997
The bill whose success the president so prematurely celebrates was in many key respects a retreat from responsibility. That unfortunately remains the case no matter how he and the others responsible for it try to dress it up. – Editorial

Real Work for Real Wages
August 21, 1997
Running public workfare programs with federal minimum-wage and other protections would be prohibitively costly and burdensome. – Sander Levin

Planning for the Best of Times
August 18, 1997
The welfare rolls have shrunk to their lowest level since 1970, yet a recession no greater than that of 1990 could swell the rolls again and make it impossible for states to meet the requirements of the new law. – Daniel P. McMurrer and Isabel V. Sawhill

Welfare Jolt
July 8, 1997
The danger of the reforms is not that they will force people to work but that people will be forced off the rolls without work to go to. – E. J. Dionne Jr.

The Minimum Wage Debacle
May 28, 1997
The White House ruling that states must pay workfare participants minimum wage may be good for organized labor, but it's bad news for welfare recipients and a raw deal for states. – Paul Offner

Immigrants, Welfare and the GOP
May 28, 1997
Reading The Post, no one would know how carefully the Republican welfare policy had been thought through, how consistent the policy is with long-standing principles of immigration policy, nor how popular the policy is with most Americans.– E. Clay Shaw Jr. and Lamar Smith

Wages of Welfare Reform
May 19, 1997
The president was right to order that welfare recipients put to work under the terms of last year's welfare bill be paid the minimum wage – Editorial

Lost on the Road to Reform
May 11, 1997
Government reports and some media accounts would have us believe that welfare reform is going great. But, like beauty, success is in the eye of the beholder. – Janet Schrader

The Culture of Poverty
April 30, 1997
As a society, we are fairly helpless to correct the worst problems of child poverty. This is not a new insight, but by confirming it, Susan Mayer discredits much of the welfare debate's overwrought rhetoric. – Robert J. Samuelson

How the GOP Discredits Welfare Reform
April 25, 1997
By failing to reverse a retroactive immigrant welfare ban, Republicans risk discrediting both themselves and the welfare reform for which they fought for decades. – Mickey Kaus

Targeting the Most Vulnerable
April 10, 1997
A little-noticed change in the recently proposed Welfare Reform Law and regulations would cause great tragedy to poor families who have a child with mental retardation. – Eunice Kennedy Shriver

The Buyout of the Governors
February 18, 1997
In time, the federal retreat on welfare will take its predictable toll on the states and poor alike, but by then the members who wrote it and the governors and president who acquiesced in it mostly will be gone. – Editorial

Letting the Poor Take Care of the Poorer
January 31, 1997
Now that the federal government has shucked off responsibility for the poor to the states, states are shucking off responsibility to counties and cities. Soon nobody will be responsible for helping the poor. – E.J. Dionne, Jr.

'Welfare Dust Bowl'
September 25, 1996
In the end, after all the flips and trips, we are left with de-entitlement, with welfare repeal rather than welfare reform.– Mark Alan Hughes

Resigning on Principle . . .
Sept 17, 1996
The three members of the Clinton administration who resigned over President Clinton's decision to sign a welfare bill remind us that some people come to politics for the right reasons.– E. J. Dionne Jr.

Welfare As I Know It: A Virginia Caseworker Tells How Her Clients' Lives Are Already Changing
Aug 25, 1996
Like fairy tales, welfare reform theory presumes a happy ending: She got a job, got off welfare and lives happily ever after. But getting a job and attaining self-sufficiency are not the same. – Janet Schrader

It Won't Wash, Mr. President
Aug 23, 1996
The president signed a bad bill for political reasons and in the process sacrificed the interests of some of the nation's poorest people, including poor children. – Editorial

A Welfare Test
Aug 18, 1996
The current welfare system is a present-day horror. During the last three decades, it has piled up a terrible body count in terms of wasted and lost lives. – William J. Bennett

Worse Than Welfare As We Know It?
August 8, 1996
Isn't it just possible that we might do a better job by tearing the whole welfare system down and rebuilding it from scratch? – William Raspberry

Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan/TWP
Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-N.Y.) is an outspoken foe of the recent changes in welfare (Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post)

When Principle Is at Issue
August 4, 1996
The premise of this legislation is that the behavior of certain adults can be changed by making the lives of their children as wretched as possible. This is a fearsome assumption, in my view. – Daniel P. Moynihan

For Better or Worse?
July 31, 1996
We are now hearing a lot about the promise and peril of "welfare reform." What can't be predicted is how the good and bad will balance. – Robert J. Samuelson

Trashed by the Welfare Bill
July 27, 1996
Not long after the Million Man March, a mean-spirited Congress pulled the rug out from under 2 million poor African American families and their 4 million children. – Colbert L. King

A Million More Poor Children
July 26, 1996
We estimate that the House version of welfare reform would increase the number of poor children by 1.1 million – or, by 12 percent.– Isabel Sawhill and Sheila Zedlewski

Unlearned Lessons About Welfare
July 25, 1996
The remarkable thing about the welfare bill passed Tuesday by the Senate is that it ignores just about everything we've learned about the subject during the past 35 years. – Paul Offner

© Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company

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