State of Wisconsin Archives: on Welfare & Poverty


Scott Walker: Help transition from government dependence to independence

Years ago, under Governor Doyle, eligibility for BadgerCare Plus went up, but not enough funds were budgeted, so many people living in poverty were put on a waiting list. This year, for the first time in Wisconsin history, everyone living in poverty will be able to access health care under Medicaid.

For those living above poverty, we transition them into the marketplace. I believe Medicaid is for those living in poverty, and our goal should be to help lift more and more people out of the depths of economic despair.

Our Wisconsin Plan is unique as we are able to cover everyone living in poverty, reduce the number of uninsured, and still not expose Wisconsin taxpayers to the uncertain potential cost of the federal Medicaid expansion.

Helping more people transition from government dependence to true independence is not only good for the taxpayers, it is good for employers, too. Most importantly, it is good for the people, who can now control their own lives and their own destinies.

Source: 2014 State of the State Address to Wisconsin legislature Jan 22, 2014

Tommy Thompson: Replace Welfare with the Tools to Succeed

Gov. Thompson made building our people - particularly the poor - an important priority. Frustrated that generations of families were being locked in a welfare trap, Thompson embarked on welfare reform in 1987, long before it became a major national issue

Before starting, Thompson invited groups of welfare mothers to his home for luncheon discussions on what locked them into welfare and what was needed to free them from the trap. The most commonly cited barriers to leaving welfare were inadequate child care, health care, transportation and training - four elements that became the foundation for the governor’s reform programs.

Since 1987, Thompson has instituted many welfare reform programs and initiatives that have combined to reduce Wisconsin’s welfare caseload by more than any state in the nation.

Since 1987, Wisconsin has cut its welfare caseload by more than 93%, from 98,000 AFDC families in January 1987 to under 6,700 W-2 cash assistance families in February 2000.

Source: Wisconsin Governor’s web site Dec 25, 2000

Tommy Thompson: Early leader in welfare reform

Wisconsin was so far ahead in its reforms that Gov. Thompson ended welfare and the AFDC entitlement check altogether and replaced it with a new program based on work called Wisconsin Works, better known as W-2. This program is now the standard for welfare reform in America.
Source: Wisconsin Governor’s web site Dec 25, 2000

  • The above quotations are from State of Wisconsin Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Welfare & Poverty.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2016 Presidential contenders on Welfare & Poverty:
  Democrats:
Secy.Hillary Clinton(NY)
V.P.Joe Biden(DE)
Gov.Andrew Cuomo(NY)
Mayor Rahm Emanuel(IL)
Gov.Martin O`Malley(MD)

Republicans:
Amb.John Bolton(MD)
Gov.Jeb Bush(FL)
Dr.Ben Carson(MD)
Gov.Chris Christie(NJ)
Sen.Ted Cruz(TX)
Gov.Mike Huckabee(AR)
Gov.Jon Huntsman(UT)
Gov.Bobby Jindal(LA)
Rep.Peter King(NY)
Gov.Sarah Palin(AK)
Sen.Rand Paul(KY)
Gov.Rick Perry(TX)
Sen.Rob Portman(OH)
Secy.Condi Rice(CA)
Sen.Marco Rubio(FL)
Rep.Paul Ryan(WI)
Sen.Rick Santorum(PA)
2016 Third Party Candidates:
Mayor Michael Bloomberg(I-NYC)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Donald Trump(NY)
Gov.Jesse Ventura(I-MN)
Please consider a donation to OnTheIssues.org!
Click for details -- or send donations to:
1770 Mass Ave. #630, Cambridge MA 02140
E-mail: submit@OnTheIssues.org
(We rely on your support!)

Page last updated: Mar 29, 2014