While our welfare system has grown exponentially in the past fifty years, the number of Americans living in poverty has barely decreased. It’s clear that big government programs that trap hardworking families and disincentive hard work are not the answer.
Maine has made great strides in reforming our welfare system, and ensuring our welfare resources are being put to good use. While most of our recent reforms have come at the state level, we must make federal changes that reflect our Maine values of hard-work and responsibility. This means ensuring SNAP benefits are only used to purchase food and nutritious items, common-sense measures that prevent EBT trafficking, pushing able-bodied adults without children to work before receive benefits, and reallocating much of the unnecessary funding towards training and workforce development.
As a Maine native, I’ve met countless families and individuals who are trapped in generational poverty. They become ensnared in our welfare programs, and have little means or opportunity to rise out of poverty. We must provide Mainers with the tools and the resources to improve their lives, build up their communities, and obtain a good-paying job.
Liberal politicians have waged war on our jobs, and pushed big-government spending programs that have increased taxes, and harmed businesses. But I know the key to eradicating poverty is not more government intervention, but increasing access employment, guaranteeing we have well-educated and highly-skilled workers, and allowing our citizens to climb the ladder of employment.
Our welfare system must be geared towards helping those who are truly need. We simply cannot afford to be wasting our precious dollars, and giving hand-outs to those who do not need or deserve assistance.
Our welfare system must help the elderly who need care, the disabled and the sick who have no means to care for themselves, and those who truly are in a difficult financial situation and deserve our help. In Congress, I’ll fight to ensure we have a compassionate, but fair and firm welfare system that helps our impoverished families rise up out of poverty.