Fox & Friends complains about proposal to give poor Americans a small stipend: "What's the reason to work?"
The Heartland Institute's Justin Haskins claims "if you just hand everybody $3,000 or $6,000, it's not going to make anyone better off"
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From the June 12 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:
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BRIAN KILMEADE (CO-HOST): Forget Obamaphones, Congresswoman Rashid Tlaib pitching a plan to fight poverty and income inequality with free cash. The freshman Democrat introducing, quote, "Livable Incomes for Families Plus Act," which would give between 3 and $6,000 per year to low income and middle class Americans, including full cash payout to those with no income at all. It's a brand new op-ed that she has out, she goes on to that the proposal is just another reminder that some Democrats have no clue how basic economics work, and that person who wrote that column joins us now. Executive director of research fellow at The Heartland Institute, Justin Haskins. Justin, so, between if you are a individual and you are working class or poor, $3,000. If you have a family $6,000, what's wrong with that?
JUSTIN HASKINS (THE HEARTLAND INSTITUTE): Well, what's the reason to work if the government's just going to hand you cash? And how is handing everybody $3,000 or $6,000 actually going to improve people's lives? If people just all of the sudden have 3,000 or $6,000 in their pockets, the price of everything is going to go up. So this isn't going to help anyone. This is all about increasing the power and control of government. It's about making people more dependent on government. Rashida Tlaib is a democratic socialist, so she is perfectly fine with that.
HASKINS: This is about destroying capitalism, not improving people's lives.
KILMEADE: So she's saying give people a boost, try to equal the playing field.
HASKINS: Yeah, I mean as I said before, if you just hand everybody 3,000 or $6,000, it's not going to make anyone better off. Because every business in America is going to know that people have more money. So it's just going to increase prices for people. It's not going to help them. It's going to disincentivize people to work harder. Because if you are making, let's say $49,000, why would you want to make $55,000 if you know that you lose your $3,000 check?
KILMEADE: And people game every system. If they're going to say OK, I'm working poor and I'm going to go bar tend down at the shore this summer, make cash, and then still get my free cash come September.
HASKINS: That's exactly right. I mean, there's always going to be fraud in these kind of systems. And again, this is not designed to help anybody, and Rashida Tlaib actually knows this. This is about destroying capitalism. That's what Rashida Tlaib wants. She's a member of the Democratic Socialists of America. They openly say they want to get rid of capitalism in favor of these kinds of programs.
KILMEADE: Justin, people are afraid of using the term compete, go out and compete. Try to make yourself better. Try to do the best you can. People want guaranteed outcomes. What do you say to people who say you give me $3,000, I'm going to and pick up tires I've always needed. I'm going to go and go to the landscaper, to the nursery, and pick up those trees and those bushes, and I'm helping the economy that way?
HASKINS: I think the best way to help the economy and the best way to help lower-income people and working class people is to provide them with job training programs, provide them with economic opportunities that will improve their lives, that will help them build their resumes so that they can move toward self-sufficiency, so that they can gain valuable job skills.
HASKINS: This doesn't do any of that. This is just encouraging people to remain where they are right now.
KILMEADE: Right. Here's the big hurdle for Republicans though. You have logic on your side and maybe reality, but when you have a candidate say 'I'll give you free health care, I'll give you free preschool, I'll eliminate your student debt,' and one person says 'I can't do that,' they're going to vote for the one that says they can. And then Republicans have to have a counter message.