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Welfare Reform

December 21, 2011 | By Robin Abcarian, Reporting from Des Moines, Iowa
In an ornate room of the golden-domed Iowa Capitol building this morning, Newt Gingrich stepped before cameras to thank two state House speakers for their endorsements. Kraig Paulsen of Iowa and William O'Brien of New Hampshire had just given their blessings to his quest for the Republican presidential nomination. But Gingrich had barely gotten a sentence out when a young man who had been sitting behind him -- perfectly positioned for the cameras, it must be said -- leaped out of his chair, moved toward Gingrich and yelled, “Mike check!
July 31, 2011 | Alexandra Zavis
Cynde Soto dreads the arrival of yet another benefit notice. Her cash assistance has been cut four times in two years. State medical coverage is getting more expensive and no longer includes dental care or podiatry. And the in-home help she needs to take care of basics has been cut by about 20 minutes a day. "That doesn't sound like a lot to people but ... I'm a quadriplegic," said the 54-year-old Long Beach resident. "I can't even scratch my own nose. " Faced with years of recession-driven budget shortfalls, state lawmakers have made deep cuts to health and social services.
May 11, 2010 | James Oliphant
The White House during President Clinton's second term was a combustible, ambitious place. While to the public it appeared that the chief executive was spending most of his time embroiled in scandal, a small group of staffers worked behind the scenes to pursue an aggressive policy agenda. Elena Kagan was one of them. She had come to the Clinton domestic policy shop in 1997 after serving as an administration lawyer. By the time she left two years later, she had put her stamp on the office, a unit that took on tobacco and gun industries, advocated campaign finance reform, backed affirmative action and worked to preserve abortion rights.
April 3, 2010 | By Kim Christensen
A review of computer systems around the country has yielded potential information-sharing fixes that might prevent deaths or injuries in the child-welfare system here, Los Angeles County officials said Friday, but none can be put in place without legislative changes. Among the likely contenders to replace the county's much-maligned computer system, known as the Family and Children's Index, is a Web-based portal, similar to a search engine, that would allow authorized users to freely exchange information.
July 23, 2007 | Amity Shlaes, AMITY SHLAES is the author of "The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression," a syndicated columnist for Bloomberg News and a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.
WHERE'S the fun? That's the feeling you get watching the Democrats in Washington this summer. Gone is the happy plan for a frenzy of lawmaking, the "Hundred Hours" of action Speaker Nancy Pelosi promised when the Democrats took the House. The speaker's artful allusion to Franklin D. Roosevelt's "Hundred Days" quickly became an ironic echo.
April 4, 2007 | Dennis Boyle, DENNIS BOYLE served as director of Riverside County's Department of Public Social Services from 1996 to 2004 and as the director of the California Department of Social Services from late 2004 through 2005.
IN 1987, Riverside County took a bold step toward reforming its welfare program. The county's human services agency, which I ran from 1996 to 2004, was a leader in changing welfare from a monthly check with no strings attached to a program that focused on self-sufficiency through employment. The "work first" philosophy we pioneered was highly successful, and our approach became a model for sweeping national welfare reform in 1996.
October 22, 2006 | Amy L. Wax, AMY L. WAX is a professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School.
THIS FALL marks the 10th anniversary of Clinton-era welfare reform, which imposed strict work requirements and time limits for receiving some forms of federal relief. Have the rules been a success? If the goal is employment, reform has unquestionably triumphed. Many single mothers -- the prime recipients under the old Aid to Families with Dependent Children program -- have dropped off the rolls entirely.
August 23, 2006 | Noah Zatz, NOAH ZATZ is a professor at the UCLA School of Law.
THE SWEEPING welfare reforms of the 1990s had two faces. Unfortunately, only one of them is on display during this week's celebrations of the 10th anniversary of these reforms. As policymakers and pundits praise the reforms' successes, they are focusing on one simple idea: work requirements -- the mandate that welfare recipients go to work or lose benefits. They're crediting it alone with successfully reforming the system.
April 27, 2006 | Dennis McLellan, Times Staff Writer
Robert B. Carleson, who helped initiate major changes in the California welfare system in the early 1970s and implemented them as part of then-Gov. Ronald Reagan's administration, has died. He was 75. Carleson, of Alexandria, Va., who continued to focus on welfare reform initiatives as a special assistant to Reagan when he became president, died Friday in a Washington, D.C., hospital after a brief illness, said his wife, Susan.
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