Romney Campaign Allies with Ted Cruz on Welfare Reform, Small Business

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Republican senate candidate Ted Cruz is coordinating with the Romney campaign with an assault on the Obama administration's removal of work requirements from the welfare reform law passed during the Clinton presidency.

Cruz: Bill Clinton 'too conservative' for Barack Obama

According to the Daily Caller, Cruz participated in a conference call on welfare reform with the media on behalf of the Romney campaign. In the call, Cruz suggested that President Bill Clinton, who signed a welfare reform measure into law in 1996 that required welfare recipients to either work or to seek work, was "too conservative" for President Obama. Cruz suggested that Obama, by using an executive order to remove the work requirement, was doing an end run around Congress. Obama did not try to make the case for his new policy. He just enacted it with a stroke of a pen. Cruz further stated that welfare to work was a fundamental strategy to help people on welfare find work and thus grant them independence, something he says that Obama has taken away. A Human Events account of the conference call also mentions that Cruz called the Obama policy fiscally irresponsible as it would add to the cost of the welfare system by fostering dependence.

Cruz part of wide ranging assault against Obama welfare policy

The Romney campaign has also produced an ad which accuses President Obama of "gutting" welfare reform. The Washington Post notes that Romney has started to use Obama's removing the work requirement from welfare as a talking point in stump speeches on the campaign trail, starting with a swing through Illinois.

Romney quotes Cruz while releasing Texas ad

According to KFYO the Romney campaign quoted Cruz while releasing an ad that touted a Hispanic-owned business in Texas as part of an assault against Obama's "you didn't build that" gaffe against private enterprise. The quote from Cruz in the news release accompanying the ad suggests that Obama hurts small business, including Texas-owned businesses as featured in the ad, through excessive regulation and high taxes.

Romney alliance with Cruz good political strategy

Cruz, coming off of a smashing runoff victory for the Republican nomination for the Senate, is both a tea party favorite and a rising Hispanic star in the GOP. He is very likely to win the general election in the deep red state of Texas. Thus, in a prospective Romney presidency, Cruz will be part of a Senate that will be expected to pass Romney's agenda. Reaching out to Cruz, including him as a de facto partner in the Romney campaign, makes good political sense, not only because of Cruz's future status as a senator, but as a means to reach out to two important constituencies -- tea party activists and Hispanic voters.

Texas resident Mark Whittington writes about state issues for the Yahoo! Contributor Network.

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