Lawmaker Clarifies Remarks on Pell Grants and Welfare

April 19, 2011

Representative Denny Rehberg, a Montana Republican who chairs the House appropriations subcommittee with jurisdiction over education programs, is clarifying his remarks comparing Pell Grants to welfare. In a radio interview this month, he made the comparison, prompting criticism in Montana, and this Facebook group. Rehberg, who is running for the Senate, still is making the comparison, but said he isn't necessarily comparing those who receive Pell Grants and welfare, but the programs themselves, The Huffington Post reported. In a new radio interview, he said that "the difficulty is, Pell Grants are an attempt to do the right thing, and that is to give the low-income student an opportunity to access higher education, and that's a good thing. And welfare was an attempt to help those most in need. The difficulty is, often times a program is so successful that it grows and grows and grows and grows."

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