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house Bill H. Joint Res. 42

Do States Need More Freedom to Drug Test Welfare Recipients As They See Fit?

Argument in favor

The Obama administration’s rule is too narrowly tailored, and effectively prohibits states from drug testing the majority of people on unemployment insurance. The regulation should be overturned so states can design their own programs for drug testing people receiving unemployment benefits.

operaman's Opinion
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02/13/2017
Yes, if your neighbor is paying you not to work for a paycheck, then he is your boss and he requires a drug test to assure that you are doing your job. Your neighbor is paying you to not do drugs. PERIOD. If housing projects are centers of drug trafficking, then it seems reasonable to drug test local housing recipients.
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foleyrules's Opinion
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02/13/2017
If you get $ from state or fed government yes drug testing should be mandatory nationwide
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Irene's Opinion
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02/15/2017
We get drug tested for jobs so they should also for their benefits.
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Argument opposed

The Obama administration spent four years crafting a deliberately narrow rule to ensure that people aren’t needlessly drug tested just because they’re out of work. Drug testing people who are getting unemployment benefits presumes that they’re drug users, and that’s wrong.

Chris's Opinion
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02/13/2017
We have already used a sampling strategy to demonstrate that this isn't a problem. This is just a play on people's incorrect impressions of what types of people are out of work and a favor to the drug testing industry.
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Dena's Opinion
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02/13/2017
I am much more concerned about drug use among legislators at the local, state, and federal level than I am about welfare recipients' drug use.
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Cdh111's Opinion
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02/13/2017
It's been shown in several states that this is a waste of state taxpayer money which could be used to better effect in other programs.
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joint resolution Progress


  • EnactedMarch 31st, 2017
    The President signed this bill into law
  • The senate Passed March 14th, 2017
    Roll Call Vote 51 Yea / 48 Nay
  • The house Passed February 15th, 2017
    Roll Call Vote 236 Yea / 189 Nay
      house Committees
      Worker and Family Support
      Committee on Ways and Means
    IntroducedJanuary 30th, 2017

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    Yes, if your neighbor is paying you not to work for a paycheck, then he is your boss and he requires a drug test to assure that you are doing your job. Your neighbor is paying you to not do drugs. PERIOD. If housing projects are centers of drug trafficking, then it seems reasonable to drug test local housing recipients.
    Like (145)
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    We have already used a sampling strategy to demonstrate that this isn't a problem. This is just a play on people's incorrect impressions of what types of people are out of work and a favor to the drug testing industry.
    Like (1441)
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    I am much more concerned about drug use among legislators at the local, state, and federal level than I am about welfare recipients' drug use.
    Like (1334)
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    It's been shown in several states that this is a waste of state taxpayer money which could be used to better effect in other programs.
    Like (981)
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    People born into and stuck in the cycle of poverty are inherently more susceptible to falling victim to drug abuse. Instead of punishing them as criminals, we need to see them as victims who need help getting out of the cycle of drug abuse. Instead, you want to kick them while they're down? Spend a week in the shoes of someone stuck in a seemingly endless cycle of despair due to poverty, illness and under-privilege, then tell me it's fair to spend taxpayer dollars to punish the victimized portion of the US populace.
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    Drug test wall street too. They get corporate welfare. Stop picking on the poor.
    Like (398)
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    drug test billionaires first
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    Results show that screening welfare recipients is a waste of money!
    Like (232)
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    Florida tried this and it was struck down as unconstitutional as unlawful search and seizure. It netted less than 1% of applicants and punishes the children.
    Like (222)
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    This is an absolute waste of money for people already complaining that the costs of welfare are too high.
    Like (178)
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    Testing people who are on unemployment benefits is a huge waste of time and money in addition to being insulting and humiliating to people who are already down on their luck.
    Like (132)
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    Studies show testing welfare recipients is a waste of money. Very few welfare recipients use drugs. This program is used to profit testing corporations who get tax payer money and results in higher costs, because the vast majority of tests are negative.
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    If you get $ from state or fed government yes drug testing should be mandatory nationwide
    Like (77)
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    Where this has already been done, it's established that the rate of drug use is LOWER than in the general population; the stereotype of the unemployed being deserving of suspicion is indefensible. I don't see anyone pushing for testing college students who receive federal financial aid to ensure that they are not using drugs or consuming alcohol under age. Why the difference in treatment, if we're so worried about our dollars going to someone who might be breaking the law?
    Like (77)
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    This is a proven waste of money and is immoral.
    Like (54)
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    So, if people who receive money from the government are going to be required to be drug tested then wouldn't our House and Senate members who also receive government issued heath care and paychecks need to be drug tested as well?
    Like (52)
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    We get drug tested for jobs so they should also for their benefits.
    Like (51)
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    This is an expensive solution to a problem that doesn't exist. States that have done this have spent a lot of money to find almost no drug users. It's a distraction, and a costly one at that.
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    Where is the probable cause to support such an unreasonable search?
    Like (47)
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    What data is there to suggest that there is a higher rate of drug use with welfare receivers than there is with non-welfare receivers?
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