Rep. Ken Horn knows how to get people’s attention – for better and worse.
Horn is the author of Michigan’s new welfare reform, which cuts recipients off cash assistance after they have received 48 months of benefits in their lifetimes. Because the law is retroactive, more than 11,000 families will lose their cash benefits the same day, when the policy kicks in next month.
In a story in Bridge Magazine Thursday, Horn, described in blunt terms what he believes those losing their benefits should do. “They’ll pick up a a hammer or a paint brush and man up and feed their family,” Horn said. That simple Q & A has become Bridge’s second most-viewed article in our magazine’s short history, and sparked heated comments both in support and against the Frankenmuth Republican.
“Man up and feed your family?” wrote one poster. “His whole argument is based on penalizing people. This man has no understanding of the issues at hand or the state of some families in our communities.”
“I am happy that someone had the wherewithal to enforce the legislation,” countered another. “I am saddened by the attempts to make Mr. Horn a scapegoat. “It’s not him, he is trying to aid in making a correction that will save the taxpayers some money.”
“How is he penalizing people?” wrote one reader. “The issues at hand, as well as the state of some families, is that there are too many lazy people – able-bodied people who can work – but refuse to, just like he said.”
But another wrote that “I understand the rationale for this move; however, I am puzzled that it is occurring during a recession when jobs are difficult to attain, particularly for low skilled workers, which I assume many of these people are. I am concerned about the welfare of the children in these families.”