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Statement by Senator Bob Dole on Clinton's Signing of the Welfare Reform Bill

August 22, 1996

"The success of this historic effort is welcome news to those of us who have been leading the fight to end our failed welfare system. I was proud to lead the effort in the Senate and across America with our nation's Governors, and I am pleased that the bill the President signed today bears such close resemblance to my welfare reform proposal.

"More importantly, enactment of welfare reform is long overdue relief for the millions of Americans trapped in a cycle of dependency who can look forward to a future of work, hope, opportunity, and personal responsibility.

"My only regret today is that President Clinton did not join with us sooner in helping end a welfare system that has failed the taxpayers and those it was designed to serve. After two vetoes of similar welfare reform bills, President Clinton knew he couldn't afford a third strike. When they look beyond President Clinton's election-year calculations, the American people know Republican leadership delivered welfare reform.

"Now, amid disturbing signs that President Clinton is already undermining this welfare reform bill by offering weak exemptions -- as evidenced by his waiver Monday exempting the District of Columbia from the five-year time limit on cash welfare benefits for able-bodied Americans -- the American people should demand that President Clinton allow the law to be fully implemented."

Robert Dole, Statement by Senator Bob Dole on Clinton's Signing of the Welfare Reform Bill Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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