Describing Moynihan's unease concerning the primary existing program, Aid to Families With Dependent Children (AFDC), a New Deal program, Mr. Patterson writes, "It was indeed a poorly funded, politically embattled program that fell far short of covering all needy mothers and their children, and that in most states provided aid only to impoverished female-headed families - many of them black. A great many low-income two-parent families, no matter their extent of need, were ineligible for the assistance. For this reason, Moynihan and others wondered if the program, in effect penalizing marriage, offered perverse incentives."
"On June 4, 1965," James T. Patterson writes, "President Lyndon B. Johnson delivered a commencement address at Howard University in which he outlined to a throng of some 5,000 people the most far-reaching civil rights agenda in modern U.S. history."