Republican welfare reforms passed a key vote Tuesday at the Capitol, with the Assembly Committee on Public Benefits Reform voting to advance the package.
Madison Democrat Lisa Subeck was a “no” vote. She says Governor Scott Walker is “hoping to gin up his base ahead of the election.”
Walker and Republican legislators claim their reforms will help people receiving benefits to transition into the workforce. “Unfortunately he’s choosing to use struggling working families . . . as a punching bag,” Subeck said.
The governor, who’s up for reelection in November, has called a special session on the legislation. There are ten separate bills that include asset restrictions, drug screening, testing, and treatment for some programs, as well as photo ID cards for FoodShare recipients.
Subeck said many people are already working while getting benefits — even as wages stagnate. “We should be looking at helping people get access to affordable and accessible child care, transportation, and healthcare,” Subeck said, calling those “the core issues that right now are affecting Wisconsin families.”