Fox Guest: We Should Be “Shaming People Who Are Sitting On Welfare”

From the September 28 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:

Video file

STEVE DOOCY (HOST): A curious push by the mayor of Lewiston, Maine, who wants to publish the names of everybody in that town who collects welfare. Right now there are 500 families on that list, and he thinks it might help get some of them back on track ... Here for a fair and balanced debate, Rebecca Vallas from the Center for American Progress and Seton Motley, the president of the D.C.-based non-profit, Less Government ... Seton, you say that shame is a powerful motivator. What do you mean?

SETON MOTLEY: Well we know it is, because the left has warped and redirected it and wants to shame taxpayers for not paying enough taxes and for wanting to know what government money is being used to do. Bob Dole and his terrible 1996 presidential campaign said we've lost shame as a motivating factor in our society. We have in the way he meant it. What we need to do is know -- government does a terrible job of tracking how they spend our money. If we publish the welfare recipients we'll track it. We know there's widespread welfare abuse. Government doesn't seem to care to do anything about reigning it in. If the American taxpayers, who are paying the freight, know who is getting welfare they can keep a better eye on who is abusing the system et cetera and perhaps we can do some real serious welfare reform.

DOOCY: Okay, Rebecca, the key to what he just said were the people who are abusing the system. There are some people, you know, we all know abuse the system, they go on it for years. But there are others, you know, who run into a tough spot and they might have to go on public assistance for a while. What's the matter with putting the list out there of the people who are winding up with money out of the taxpayers' pocket?

REBECCA VALLAS: Thanks so much, Steve. The real shame here is that our minimum wage in this country is a poverty wage, and the fact is, it's not enough anymore to lift a family of three out of poverty. We've got families across the United States who are working families who have to turn to public assistance like food stamps in order to keep food on the table. And so if we're serious about shrinking spending on public assistance, then what we really should be doing is raising the minimum wage. Raising the minimum wage to $12 an hour would actually save $53 billion in food stamps over the next 10 years. That's the way to get people off public assistance.

DOOCY: Seton, it sounds like she would like to see a list of the employers who are paying less than $15 an hour, which is different than the list of people on welfare.

MOTLEY: Yeah, once again let's shame the people who are creating jobs rather than, you know, shaming the people who are sitting on welfare. And of course she's got half the table right on raising the minimum wage. Of course, the number of people on assistance will explode because of all the jobs that will be killed by a resulting, as a result of the raising of the minimum wage. The problem is, a family of three is not supposed to be living on a minimum wage. If you are making minimum wage you shouldn't be having children and being on, and trying to raise a family on it.