Statement Of Sen. Lamar Alexander Regarding The Failure Of Welfare Reform Reauthorization Cloture Vote

Posted on April 1, 2004

Let me try to put Washington business in a local perspective. Before I came to the U.S. Senate, I was chairman of the Red Shield Family Initiative in Nashville. That was the Salvation Army's coalition to try to implement the federal welfare to work law. It basically helped people in Nashville move from welfare, to work, to independence. I know how hard that is, how important that is, how much it means and how successful it has been. We are trying to reauthorize the welfare reform law. This law includes enough money this coming year to help 100,000 people - mostly women - pay for child care, so they can go and work. We want the movement from welfare to work to be a door out opportunity - not a revolving door back to welfare. Child care means a pathway out. There is no excuse for the Democrats to be blocking 100,000 poor women in America from having the chance to have child care so they can go to work and become self-sufficient. I hope very much that we'll be able to move ahead with welfare reauthorization in the next few days.