- Associated Press - Friday, September 25, 2015

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback this week sent a message criticizing government dependence and touting his own welfare reforms to supporters of his successful 2014 campaign for re-election.

The email was sent Wednesday night by Melika Willoughby, the governor’s deputy director of communications. Brownback’s office regularly has sent out emails lauding his policies since he was re-elected, The Wichita Eagle (https://bit.ly/1jin2Ad ) reported.

In the email, the Republican governor claims that “generations have been “locked into the crippling cycle of government dependence” and accuses Democrats of trying to “increase the number of Americans who are dependent on the government.”

“This growing dependency is necessary to justify the big government and high tax policies they support,” the email states. “Under the guise of helping struggling Americans, they’ve spent billions of dollars in the so-called ‘war on poverty.’”

A bill Brownback signed in April that solidified a work requirement for able-bodied welfare recipients without dependents also was praised in the email.

“Poverty is subdued not when liberals throw money at an issue, but when Kansans are able to stand independently - without the confining shackles of artificial government assistance,” Willoughby wrote in the email. “With work, comes dignity, self-respect, and a boundless future.”

The governor’s suggestion that Americans who need government assistance are shackled shows a “warped philosophy” about the nature of poverty, said Democratic state Sen. David Haley of Kansas City.

The email sparked backlash on social media, with critics pointing out that Brownback hasn’t fulfilled his promise to create more jobs.

“Work requires jobs. Still waiting for promised jobs to materialize. Meanwhile, over 3,000 state jobs cut,” the Kansas Organization of State Employees said on Twitter.


Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle, https://www.kansas.com

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