From the March 30 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:
STEVE DOOCEY (CO-HOST): No work, no food, that's the position more states are taking when it comes to food stamps and welfare.
AINSLEY EARHARDT (CO-HOST): As of today, Mississippi residents must work or volunteer at least 20 hours a week to qualify. And nearly a dozen states have restored the requirements since the Obama administration lifted them. Here to react to this is former Dave County Florida Circuit Court Judge Alex Ferrer. Thanks for being with us, judge.
ALEX FERRER: Always great to be here. Good morning.
EARHARDT: What's your reaction to this?
FERRER: I think it's a great idea. First of all, there's a lot of people on food stamps, of course, who absolutely need food stamps and they're not gaming the system, but there's also people who are gaming the system. Who feel, “I'd rather just get benefits, you know, and not work.” And, I did something very similar when I was a judge in the criminal court. You have the same problem with criminals who, let's say, burglarize your home and steal $5,000. They get caught, and they're ordered to pay the victim back. Well, they don't. And they know they can not be thrown in jail for inability to pay because it's debtors prison. And it's very difficult to prove that they would have the ability to pay. So they say, “you know what, I'm not going to give a portion of my money to the victim, I'm just not going to work.” And at the end, there's nothing you can do about it. So what I would do is I'd tell the defendant, “You know what? For every week you're on probation that you're not working 30 hours a week, you're doing 30 hours of community service.” And so you either work for free, or you work for money. And guess what? Every one of them got a job, and every one of my victims got paid back.
BRIAN KILMEADE (CO-HOST): You know, what's so interesting on this program, welfare reform was done by Newt Gingrich and Bill Clinton. And the economy collapsed, and they said “Okay just take your food stamps, don't worry about the work unemployment's over 10 percent.” Then Kansas says, “I'm putting this program back into work.” And then Mississippi is doing it now. And Maine did it, and the results are staggering. When people know they got to put the work in, they get off food stamps.
FERRER: Absolutely. Absolutely. Because, you know what? Money is still going into their pocket, regardless of -- the food stamp is not a replacement for work. You're not going to break even. Your always -- but if you give people the opportunity and say, “you can stay home and we'll pay you, you know, $200 a week, or you can work and make $300 a week.” They go, “Okay, well is it really worth it?”
EARHARDT: So no longer can anyone use the excuse, “I can't find a job.” Because they can volunteer.
FERRER: And we could definitely use the community service.