Conservative Maine Government Doubles Down On Successful Welfare Reform Policies Despite Leftist Whining

Maine Doubles Down On Welfare Reform Despite Media Backlash – Daily Signal


Mary Mayhew, commissioner of Maine’s Department of Health and Human Services, knows her politics aren’t always popular.

“I can’t stress enough what an attack campaign it has been from the media for four and a half years,” Mayhew said Thursday at an anti-poverty forum in Washington, D.C., hosted by The Heritage Foundation.

Then there are the more personalized critiques: “There is a poet, or he calls himself a poet, and he sends me poems all the time,” she added. “They are not nice poems.”

Mayhew claims that detractors – who mostly take issue with welfare reforms enacted by Gov. Paul LePage, a Republican, since his election in 2011 – have gone so far as to call her “Commissioner Evil,” and her and LePage’s policies a “War on the Poor.”

The irony, according to Mayhew, lies in the fact that her and LePage’s efforts actually aim to empower Maine’s poorest citizens. She says a third of the state is on welfare.

“The welfare hurricane doesn’t just destroy one family; it destroys generations of them,” Tarren Bragdon, president and CEO of the Foundation for Government Accountability, said at the event Thursday. “This work is about giving children a better chance for a future.”

To illustrate that point, Mayhew told a story of one of her first days on the job as DHHS commissioner, spent touring a substance abuse treatment facility for adolescents:

I was taken aback by one of the youth who came up to me – it was actually several youth, who were just completely focused on whether I could help them get disability. These were 15-year-old, 16-year-old young men clearly battling addiction, but they had decided that the answer for them was to pursue disability. And, frankly, as we all look at that pathway, that truly is committing individuals to a lifetime of poverty.

Since LePage assumed the governorship, Maine has reduced enrollment in the state’s food stamp program by over 58,000; currently, according to Mayhew, there are 197,000 people on food stamps, down from a high of 255,663 in February 2012.

Mayhew says the decline is due to eliminating the waiver of the work requirement previously attached to food stamps, as also witnessed in Kansas. Under the new legislation, recipients would need to work 20 hours per week, volunteer for about an hour a day, or attend a class to receive food stamps past three months.

LePage and Mayhew have also rolled back Medicaid eligibility through a series of battles Mayhew called “fierce.”

With a population of roughly 1.3 million, Maine had 357,000 individuals receiving Medicaid benefits when LePage took office. Today, 287,000 people are on Medicaid, according to Mayhew.

“What we have done truly has taken the arguments to the public to underscore what has been lost as that program grew out of control, never mind that the resources that had to be devoted to Medicaid were being taken away from education, infrastructure, and reduced tax burden on the state of Maine,” Mayhew said.

In August, Maine DHHS announced they planned to redirect $3.24 million in welfare savings to fund home care services for elderly citizens as well as the Meals on Wheels program.

Lastly, Mayhew touched upon Maine’s efforts to retool the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card programs, stating that Maine had over 15,000 open TANF cases when LePage took office. That number is down to less than 5,000.

LePage’s and Mayhew’s policies, as Mayhew herself highlighted, have not been without controversy.

Earlier this week, amid an ongoing dispute over EBT cards being used to wire money abroad, critics accused the LePage administration of using last Friday’s terror attacks in Paris to justify reforms.

“This proposal is really an example of fear-mongering at its worst,” Robyn Merrill, executive director of Maine Equal Justice Partners, told MPBN News.

But Mayhew does not plan to back down – especially if it means reducing her own influence long-term, and shifting that responsibility to local non-profits.

“I can’t underscore enough that part of the issue is government is too big, my agency is too large, and people are trying to preserve their jobs,” she said.

“We have got to reduce the size and scope of these agencies if we are going to have communities really take on the responsibility of supporting these families and these individuals on those pathways [to independence].”



Insane Muslim Migrant Policies Pushing Germany Towards Anarchy And Civil War

Migrant Crisis Pushing Germany Towards ‘anarchy And Civil War’ – Russia Today


Germany now is somewhere at the edge of anarchy and sliding towards civil war, or to become a banana republic without any government, says Hansjoerg Mueller of the Alternative for Germany party.

Bavarian official Peter Dreier called German Chancellor Angela Merkel to tell her personally that if Germany welcomes a million refugees, his town of Landshut will only take in around 1,800. Any extra will be put on buses and sent to her Chancellery in Berlin.

RT: He says he’s going to send them to Berlin, but does he have the power?

Hansjoerg Mueller: The person who wants to send them to Berlin is Mr. Dreier. He is the district head of Landshut, a town close to Munich. Usually he does not have the power, but we are not living in usual times. What we are now looking at is more and more Germany sliding towards anarchy. In this situation I think less and less is determined by law, more and more is determined by who acts. And the person who acts in fact has the power. So if he sends… refugees to Berlin, he sends them!

RT: Will threats like this one be able to affect Merkel’s policy?

HM: I hope so, because Germany now is somewhere at the edge of anarchy and sliding towards civil war, or to become a banana republic without any government. I hope that this threat will have some effect, but knowing the psychological things that Merkel does all these days – I don’t believe in it, unfortunately.

RT: Do you think Bavaria will be the only region that says something like this, or do you expect other regions to follow?

HM: Yes, of course, Bavaria is the first region because we are affected the most – we are living on the border to Austria where the influx of refugees stems from. But the second regions of Germany where this happens are Saxony and Thuringia. First of all, they have also borders to the Czech Republic, that’s the first reason. And the second reason is that in former Eastern Germany people are still aware of what it is living in a dictatorship. They are feeling quite well that our so-called democracy is sliding more and more towards a totalitarian state. This is my personal explanation why… the demonstrations in Thuringia and in Saxony are so fierce in their movements.

RT: Only allowing 1,800 desperate refugees to stay when more than a million are expected nationally, doesn’t seem all that fair does it. Surely the region should do its bit?

HM: No, this number of 1,800 refugees does not affect only Bavaria. Bavaria can take much more. It affects only the district around the town of Landshut, and the town of Landshut has more or less 50,000 inhabitants and having nearly 2,000 refugees to meddle with the original population – this is quite a big burden. So Bavaria can take more, but not towns like Landshut.



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*VIDEO* 50 To 100 Million Health Insurance Policies To Be Cancelled By 2014 Elections


Thanks Barack… Half A Million Californians Lose Health Insurance Policies

500,000 Californians Lose Health Policies – National Review


My wife, the syndicated San Francisco Chronicle columnist Debra J. Saunders, has learned that at least 500,000 Californians may lose their health insurance next year – and that’s a conservative estimate. From her Token Conservative blog:

According to this link as of December 2012, there were 491,977 covered lives in individual health care plans regulated by the state Department Insurance that are not grandfathered under the Affordable Care Act. (If they bought a plan after March 2010, their coverage is not grandfathered.) This is a 2012 number, but if the number of people with private coverage hasn’t changed much in the last ten months, that’s half a million Californians who will lose their coverage.

Those canceled policies will have to be replaced with Obamacare-approved insurance:

California Association of Health Plans president Pat Johnston told me that by law providers must cancel non-grandfathered individual policies. (It is my understanding some folks will lose their coverage at year’s end, others might be able to extend into 2014 through the end of a covered year.) This probably means premiums hikes for people who “not only were they healthy, they also probably were very savvy shoppers.” This is a small corner of the insurance market; others may well save money under the Affordable Care Act. But for the people kicked off their individual California plans, Johnston said, it may well be that ”if you’re outside that subsidy range, you’re on your own.”

So much for, “If you like your insurance, you can keep your insurance.” The train wreck continues.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story


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8 Colorado Counties Consider Seceding From State Because Of Liberal State Government Policies

8 Colorado Counties Consider Seceding From State Because Of Liberal State Government Policies – Red Alert Politics

Several conservative-leaning counties in Northern Colorado are considering seceding from the Centennial state because of the liberal policies being passed by the state’s government.


The proposed state, which would be called North Colorado, would consist of Weld, Morgan, Logan, Sedgwick, Phillips, Washington, Yuma and Kit Carson Counties, all of which are in the rural, energy-rich northeastern part of the state.

“This is not the same state that I grew up in,” Weld County Commissioner Douglas Rademacher told Red Alert Politics. “In the last 10-15 years, the pendulum has swung so far to the left as far as anti-energy, anti-ag” policies go in the Democrat-controlled state capital of Denver.

“We were pushed into a corner, and frankly when you keep pushing into a corner you’re gonna come back out, and you’re gonna come back out with fire and that’s exactly what we did” he added, noting that ten other counties have contacted them about joining the movement.

According to Rademacher, the idea for secession actually came from residents at one of the county’s regular board meetings who are fed up with the strict gun laws and restrictions on national gas drilling the government has passed over the past few years. Just this past Wednesday Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) signed into law a bill that forces electrical cooperatives in rural areas to double the amount of renewable energy they produce by the year 2020. The state also created several new gun control laws that have adversely affected residents of these eight rural counties earlier this year.

“The constituents were frustrated over some of the legislation proposed out of Denver in which they were just basically jamming it through the legislature without any kind of feedback or really any willingness to compromise,” he told RAP. “The citizens were just upset and they just basically asked the question ‘What can we do?’ ‘Is there anything we can do as a county to stop this madness?’.”

He added that any movement toward succession would be “resident-driven,” and if the popular support for the secession is there, the commissioners in the eight counties hope to have the area’s approximately 400,000 residents vote on the issue in November.

Forming a new state within an old one is not an easy task. According to the U.S. Constitution, the process requires the approval of the existing state’s legislature and Congress. Rademacher believes the most difficult task will be winning over the state legislature, as Weld County and its neighbors provide so much profit to the state.

“We pay the bills,” he quipped.

He added that there is also the chance that North Colorado – should it succeed in its quest to break away from Colorado – could either annex other counties in neighboring Kansas and Nebraska that have expressed interest in the movement, or even completely take in a neighboring state like Wyoming.

Although it’s successfully happened five times in history, the last time a state officially broke away from another one was West Virginia in 1863. Since then there have been several failed movements to create new states within the continental 48, including the state of Delmarva, which would encompass all of Delaware and the counties along the eastern shores of Maryland and Virginia, and the “State of Superior” which would consist of the upper peninsula of Michigan.

In January, more than 125,000 Americans signed a White House petition asking the federal government to allow the state of Texas to secede (again) from the union.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story


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