Cardin blocks Hatch's disapproval resolution of administration's welfare rule

Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) objected to Hatch’s request to unanimously pass S.J.Res. 50, saying the administration’s rule simply provides states flexibility, something Republicans normally applaud.

ADVERTISEMENT
In July, the administration decided that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius could waive some welfare work requirements if the states prove they need the flexibility to improve the program. Republican lawmakers have said that is something only Congress can do.

Cardin said he thinks Republicans are using this as a political issue to help their presidential candidate, Mitt Romney. 

“I’m disappointed at the partisan nature of this discussion and I say that because I think we’ve all see the ads put out by Mitt Romney on this TANF waiver,” Cardin said.

Hatch said Romney was not asking him to bring up the issue, but that Romney simply agrees with his position on the matter. Hatch also said if states wanted more flexibility they should ask Congress to change the law.

“It’s the responsibility of the Congress to give the states the flexibility on that, not the president,” Hatch said. “The purpose is to stand up for the rights of the Congress that are being ignored here.”