“I’m introducing this bill because the Obama administration grossly underminded the constitutional authority of the legislative branch to affect changes to settled law,” Hatch said on the floor.

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Hatch accused the Obama administration of telling states that they no longer need to follow the work requirements in TANF.

“The Obama administration quietly released ‘guidance’ to the states informing them that the administration had granted itself authority to waive work requirements in TANF,” Hatch said. “In the 16 years since the creation of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, no administration has concluded that they have the authority to waive the TANF work requirements.”

White House press secretary Jay Carney said the changes speed job placement.

"The changes proposed by the Department of Health and Human Services are designed to accelerate job placement by moving more Americans from welfare to work as quickly as possible," Carney said Wednesday. "There will be no waivers of the time limits in the law, and only waivers with compelling plans to move more people off of welfare and into work will be considered.  This policy will allow states to test new, more effective ways to help people get and keep a job."

TANF includes the commonly called “welfare-to-work” program, which requires those receiving welfare payments to be employed or prove they’re looking for work.

Hatch said his bill, S. 3397, would not change TANF, just make it clear that the president doesn’t have the authority to change the law.

Republican Sens. Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyTrump Jr., Manafort reach deal to avoid public hearing next week Senate panel subpoenas co-founder of firm tied to controversial Trump dossier Trump Jr., Manafort still haven't agreed to testify before Senate panel MORE (Iowa), Jon Kyl (Ariz.), Mike CrapoMike CrapoBusiness pressure ramps up against Trump's Ex-Im nominee GOP lawmakers introduce measures to repeal consumer bureau arbitration rule Senate Banking leaders introduce flood insurance bill MORE (Idaho), Pat RobertsPat RobertsOvernight Healthcare: McConnell warns Senate not to block repeal debate | Insurers knock Cruz proposal | WH tries to discredit CBO | Lawmakers propose .1B NIH funding boost Trump: I’ll be ‘very angry’ if Senate doesn’t pass ObamaCare repeal bill Trump: Putin preferred Clinton in the White House MORE (Kan.), Mike EnziMike EnziTrump reopens fight on internet sales tax Rift opens in GOP over budget strategy GOP chairman wants 'robust' tax reform process in the Senate MORE (Wyo.), John CornynJohn CornynSenators who have felt McCain's wrath talk of their respect for him Senate heads to new healthcare vote with no clear plan McCain absence adds to GOP agenda’s uncertainty MORE (Texas), Tom CoburnTom CoburnCongress, stop using our nation's military policy for political purposes Congress must rid itself of political 'pork' to preserve its integrity 'Path of least resistance' problematic for Congress MORE (Okla.), John ThuneJohn ThuneSenate panel won’t vote on bill to boost ethanol Senate heads to new healthcare vote with no clear plan McCain absence adds to GOP agenda’s uncertainty MORE (S.D.) and Richard BurrRichard BurrBurr: Nunes 'created' unmasking allegations against Rice Susan Rice met with Senate Intelligence Committee as part of Russia probe Overnight Cybersecurity: State Department reportedly eliminating cyber office | Senate Intel chief avoids White House during Russia probe | Dem pushes 'ethical hacking' resolution MORE (N.C.) were listed as co-sponsors by Hatch.

Carney pointed out that some of the bill's co-sponsors have supported some waivers to TANF in the past.

"If I could address some of the hypocritical criticism — I have been surprised by it — by the hypocrisy of our critics since many of them have in the past supported and even proposed such waivers," Carney said.

During the 2005 welfare reauthorization, Grassley advocated for Republican governors who wanted flexibility to make changes to TANF.

Hatch admitted on the floor that the current program isn't perfect but said the administration shouldn't bypass Congress.