The Best of Notable Quotables; December 15, 1997

Vol. Ten; No. 25

The Paul Wellstone Award (for Championing Welfare Dependency)

"The most shameful act of '96 was welfare reform....welfare
reform became a political football in '96, an easy way to kick
around the poor and especially poor children and immigrants, even
legal immigrants. Bill Clinton thought the GOP had a hot issue,
so he closed his eyes and signed a bill that punishes children
and people who want to work, but can't find a job in a tough
market for entry level employment. This was a criminal act,
further dividing us as haves and have nots. It was shameful."  

--Washington Post reporter Juan Williams on CNN's Capital Gang,
December 29, 1996. [94 points]


"Like an ominous storm blown in from the East, the reality of
welfare reform has descended with relentless and unsparing force
on thousands of families like that of [Yvonne] Parris who begin
the new year today with less cash to live on and the prospect of
a welter of new rules aimed at restricting their access to
government aid....Many who are against the cuts argue that the
welfare overhaul does little to address the fundamental causes of
poverty, but is instead based on long-standing myths and

--Los Angeles Times reporters Carla Rivera and Hector Tobar in a front-page news story, January 1. [64]

"Are some current policies in Washington, however, exacerbating
the problem? For example, the new welfare reform bill is going to
put about a million kids on the street without a safety net
beneath them. We're also now pulling back from the benefits that
we've provided in the past to legal immigrants in this country
and it's putting a big burden on a lot of the states out there.
You come from an immigrant experience yourself. Do you think that
the welfare reform bill went too far in just those two areas?"  

--Tom Brokaw to Colin Powell, April 27 Meet the Press broadcast
from the volunteer summit in Philadelphia. [52]