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Judge's order re-ignites welfare fight

Lester Graham
Michigan Radio

This week's court ruling ordering the state to reinstate welfare benefits until recipients get adequate notice of termination has re-ignited the fight over whether the state should have approved new limits on the cash assistance.

 “We have the chance to right one of the wrongs committed by this body, and to save thousands of children from starvation and homelessness,” said Sen. Coleman Young (D-Detroit).

But Republican lawmakers appeared unfazed by Young’s plea. One Republican senator said the cash assistance cap was necessary to increase self-sufficiency among struggling Michiganders.

“I believe as we move forward that we need to understand that what we’ve done here is a thing that’s not fun for any of us, but self-sufficiency is key, self-sufficiency allows people to once again live the American dream—to pull themselves up,” said Sen. Bruce Caswell (R-Hillsdale). 

U.S. District Judge Paul Borman ruled on Tuesday that the state did not give people enough notice that they would no longer receive the cash benefits. He ordered the state to send another round of notices.