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VIDEO RELEASE: Committee Republicans Fight to Protect Successful Welfare Reforms, Reject Administration’s Executive Overreach

The House Committee on Education and the Workforce today approved legislation to block the Obama administration from unilaterally weakening welfare reform. H.J.Res. 118 will protect the work requirements key to the success of the 1996 welfare reform law, which has helped countless families move out of government dependency and into the workforce.

In the videos below, committee Republicans urge their colleagues to preserve successful welfare reforms and reject the president’s executive overreach by supporting H.J.Res. 118.

Preserving successful, bipartisan welfare reform


 In the years that followed, these bipartisan reforms lead to a dramatic drop in poverty and a reduction in government dependence. They worked. In my home state of Illinois, for example, thousands of individuals were able to lift themselves off of the welfare rolls.  – Rep. Judy Biggert (R-IL) 

The bipartisan law promoted work as the central focus of helping low income families achieve self-sufficiency. And it worked. [In the] years right after that, welfare cases declined by 57 percent. – Rep. Lou Barletta (R-PA) 

 The federal government provides 60 percent of [welfare funding]… we certainly have a responsibility to make sure that it’s expended appropriately and that it is a conduit to encourage people in difficult circumstances for a period of time to nonetheless continue [working toward] that American dream. – Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI) 

There’s no question that the ’96 law signed by President Clinton and passed by a Republican Congress has worked.. We need to continue to support it and anything we’re doing to subvert that should be opposed. – Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN)

Rejecting executive overreach


The American people want to see their president and Congress working together for the good of the country. It’s unfortunate that the Obama administration has chosen to act unilaterally to dismantle successes in welfare. 
– Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC) 

 The decision by this administration to waive the work requirements is not only bad policy, it’s bad governance… This decision devalues work. It downplays the importance of work. – Rep. Todd Rokita (R-IN) 

This is just another example of the president bypassing Congress… It seems to me this administration is more focused on dividing Americans and promoting dependence on an ever-growing federal government. 
– Rep. Larry Bucshon (R-IN)

To read opening statements or watch an archived webcast of today’s markup, visit

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