Republicans have created a “Work and Welfare” subcommittee within the House Ways and Means Committee and Democrats are incensed over it, screeching that it is deeply offensive to those on welfare and to black Americans in general.
Chairman Jason Smith (R-Mo.) called the committee to order on Tuesday to approve the rules in the 118th Congress. The rules put in place the new name of the committee which was immediately pounced on by a number of Democrats who made it evident they are perpetually offended over just about everything.
(Video Credit: Ways and Means Committee Republicans)
“As we know, ‘welfare,’ while it might be a word that connotes security and well-being is not well and it’s not fair, and it has been changed into a pejorative, and I find it amazing that this committee would deliberately add a pejorative to the names of the subcommittees,” Rep. Gwen Moore (D-Wisc.) whined according to Fox News.
Smith sees it differently and claims the name change reflects the GOP’s goal of getting as many people off of welfare as soon as possible.
“The reason for that is because the purpose and the focus that we’re going to have is to try to uplift people out of poverty, and the best way to uplift people out of poverty is with work,” he declared.
Smith blasted Democrats for making a mountain out of a molehill, creating controversy where there is none. He smacked them for fixating on “words and definitions.”
“Your party is one that we don’t know if you can say ‘man’ or ‘woman,’ ‘birthing person’ or ‘mother,’” he admonished. “It’s clearly about work and welfare. That alone is what this is about.”
Rep.Danny Davis (D-IL) threw the ever-present race card, claiming that the GOP name change has racial overtones.
“It’s my hope that this title was not intended to be racially offensive, but in reality it really is,” the radical leftist insisted. “The word ‘welfare’ is a deeply pejorative term in our country, that many people use to describe individuals who want to game the system. African Americans, the myths around the welfare queen, were based on lies that were used to paint a picture of African Americans as lazy, not wanting to work.”
The words “work” and “welfare” are racist? Liberals make George Orwell proud every day.
— Max Johnson (@ragamuffinmax) February 1, 2023
A number of Republicans defended the name change, including Committee Chairman Rep. Darin LaHood (R-IL) who noted he hoped Democrats can “get beyond this.”
The overriding contention by conservatives was that the committee is not meant to disparage those on welfare, but to help them rise up from poverty and get off the social program.
Republicans put forth that former President Clinton was known for his work on welfare reform. Democrats responded by saying that the world has changed and is not what it once was 30 years ago.
“I do think it’s a little tone-deaf not to recognize the evolution of the meaning of these terms, and that it does impact people,” Rep. Dan Kildee (D-MI) carped.
Gwen Moore then predictably blamed former President Ronald Reagan, accusing him of turning “welfare” into a dirty word.
“Ronald Reagan really used it exclusively to describe the welfare queen that had numerous names, Social Security numbers, different husbands, different welfare checks, reporters all over the country ran out searching for this welfare queen, and really couldn’t find her,” she charged.
Then she accused Republicans of looking to “cast aspersions” on those who are on welfare, including women with children. She snarked that she might wear a “welfare queen tiara” to the committee to remind them of the issue.
Gwen Moore: I feel like I should just wear my welfare queen tiara to this committee every day to remind myself of what your intent is.
… The Ways and Means panel is about 20 minutes into a quarrel over the GOP move to rename a subcommittee to "Work and Welfare"
— Chris Cioffi (@ReporterCioffi) January 31, 2023
“Rome is burning, and this committee is now arguing about what color to paint the fire hydrants,” Rep. Drew Ferguson (R-GA) astutely pointed out.
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