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Ending Welfare As We Know It

Ending Welfare As We Know It

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In 1996, the sixty-year old Aid to Families with Dependent Children program was replaced by a new, and dramatically different, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families program. President Clinton had promised in his 1992 presidential campaign to "end welfare as we know it," but the legislation he signed in 1996 was far closer to positions favored by congressional Republicans. It was one of the few major domestic policy initiatives of the new Republican congressional majority to make it into law-a marked contrast to the failures of a long list of welfare reform initiatives dating back to President Nixon's Family Assistance Plan of 1969. How did this extraordinary legislative change come about? In this definitive political history of the 1996 welfare reform legislation, R.Kent Weaver argues that broad contextual factors-such as public opinion, policy research on poverty and welfare, and interest group pressures-contributed to the new welfare law, but did not make it inevitable. Both broad strategic choices and short-term calculations made in the political competition between President Clinton and congressional Republicans played critical roles in driving the debate over welfare in a more conservative direction and in producing a legislative agreement. They reflect, Weaver contends, a broader process of "relational bargaining" that is a central feature of American policymaking.

Формат: 15 см x 23 см.