Note: This question is "retired" from the list of 20 VoteMatch topics. It was used from 2008 through 2014.
Allow churches to provide welfare services
- Strongly Support means you believe: Replace the federal welfare system with services provided by churches and other faith-based organizations. Supply block grants to those organizations instead of funding welfare agencies.
- Support means you believe: Support Charitable Choice: remove restrictions on religious organizations' activities, so that churches can bid on government block grants for performing welfare services. Continue other experiments with faith-based organizations.
- Oppose means you believe: Support welfare reform like welfare-to-work and welfare block grants, as long as the basic system remains within the federal government.
- Strongly Oppose means you believe: Compassion requires us to maintain and fund a federal welfare system. The neediest members of society should have a federally-guaranteed safety net.
This question is looking for your views on the government's role in providing welfare service. However you answer the above question would be similar to your response to these statements:
How do you decide between "Support" and "Strongly Support" when you agree with both the descriptions above? (Or between "Oppose" and "Strongly Oppose").
The strong positions are generally based on matters of PRINCIPLES where the regular support and oppose positions are based on PRACTICAL matters.
If you answer "No Opinion," this question is not counted in the VoteMatch answers for any candidate.
If you give a general answer of Support vs. Oppose, VoteMatch can more accurately match a candidate with your stand.
Don't worry so much about getting the strength of your answer exactly refined, or to think too hard about the exact wording of the question -- like candidates!
- Faith-based organizations can provide services better than can the government.
- Support Welfare-to-work and/or workfare programs
- Fund welfare entirely via block grants to the states
- Armies of volunteers can cure most of America's social ills.
- Strongly Support means you believe in the principle that religious institutions should be involved in welfare.
- Support means you believe in practical reasons that religious institutions are better equipped than government to help with charitable causes.
- Oppose means you believe government oversight is needed for practical reasons of effectiveness or full inclusiveness.
- Strongly Oppose means you believe in the principle of church-state separation precludes the involvement of religious institutions.
2012 Election Welfare Issues
- Faith-Based Welfare: President Bush initiated the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships to institute his Charitable Choice proposal. Churches are tax-exempt, and donations to churches and other charities are tax-deductible; Pres. Bush's policy was intended to encourage churches to perform more social services. Proponents focus on removing restrictions on religious organizations' activities, so that churches can bid on government block grants for performing welfare services. Opponents claim that lessens restrictions on separation of church and state.
- Separation of church and state: The US Constitution does not mandate "separation of church and state." That phrase comes from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson while President, in 1802. The Constitution's "Establishment Clause" says that the US will have no state church (known as an "established religion"), which has been interpreted to mean the federal government cannot fund one church over another.
- The welfare reform bill, signed by President Clinton in 1996, ended the federal entitlement to welfare,
imposed strict work requirements on recipients, and set a five-year lifetime limit for aid.
- In 1995, 88% of poor children received food stamps. By 1998 the figure had dropped to 70%.
- The welfare load currently stands at about 2 million recipients,
which has dropped by about 1/3 since the welfare reform bill was enacted.
- As welfare decreases, churches and other faith-based organizations (FBOs) pick up the slack.
- Churches are tax-exempt, and donations to churches and other charities are tax-deductible,
so federal activity focuses on tax reform to encourage donations, by increasing deductibility on federal and state income taxes.
- Other recent Congressional bills focus on removing restrictions on religious organizations' activities,
so that churches can bid on government block grants for performing welfare services.
- The lessening of restrictions on separation of church and state for this purpose is known as Charitable Choice.