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Vote Alert

“YES” on H.R. 890, the “Preserving Work Requirements for Welfare Programs Act of 2013.”

March 12, 2013

NTU urges all Representatives to vote “YES” on H.R. 890, the “Preserving Work Requirements for Welfare Programs Act of 2013.” This legislation would disapprove the rule submitted by the Department of Health and Human Services allowing states to waive certain work stipulations under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Program – a rule that weakens welfare reform.

The extraordinary action on the part of the Obama Administration, in the form of an Executive Order, undermined the monumental welfare reforms of 1996 – threatening to reverse a decade and a half of steady improvement in federal cash assistance procedures for poor Americans. One of the major cornerstones of the 1996 welfare reforms enacted under President Clinton were stricter “workfare” guidelines that encouraged TANF recipients to be more self-reliant, expedited the return of many to the workforce, and removed counterproductive incentives that discouraged seeking full-time employment.

This important overhaul of the way the federal government provided cash assistance has had remarkable and lasting outcomes both for beneficiaries and taxpayers. Overall, welfare reform has seen measurable improvements in employment and earnings for low-income Americans. Rather than chipping away at the bipartisan approach of 17 years ago, Congress should be applying that model to other entitlement programs so that aid recipients and taxpayers alike can reap the rewards.

H.R. 890 blocks implementation of the Administration’s plan, thereby leaving intact the work-for-welfare reforms and their long track record of success. A March 8 CBO estimate found that enacting this legislation would save taxpayers $61 million in direct spending over the next ten years, making H.R. 890 all the more imperative for sound economic and fiscal policy..

Roll call votes on H.R. 890 will be significantly weighted in our annual Rating of Congress and a “YES” vote will be considered the pro- taxpayer position.

If you have any questions, please contact NTU Federal Affairs Manager Nan Swift at (703) 683-5700