August 8, 2012 SouthAmerica: A Reality Check regarding the United States Welfare System... Chicago Sun-Times â August 8, 2012 "Romneyâs starting his race to the bottom" http://www.suntimes.com/news/brown/14320091-452/romneys-starting-his-race-to-the-bottom.html Mitt Romney on Tuesday reclaimed welfare as a central issue for Republicans this campaign season based on a specious and cynical claim that President Barack Obama has âdismantledâ Clinton-era welfare reform. Itâs been 16 years since former President Bill Clinton led a bipartisan effort to fix the nationâs welfare laws, most notably by requiring recipients to work or go to school. And ever since, Republicans have rued the loss of one of their favorite red-meat issues on the campaign trail. Itâs tough to rail against âwelfare mothersââ long a favored target of political panderers of all stripes â when youâve already taken credit for fixing the welfare system. Now, the Romney campaign believes it has discovered a way to again exploit the issue based on an Obama administration directive last month that will allow states to request waivers from federal regulations on how they meet the work requirement. .