The U.S. House passed a bill Thursday sponsored by Rep. Erik Paulsen, R-Minn., to prevent welfare recipients from getting access to their benefits at strip clubs, liquor stores and casinos.
But Paulsen emphasized that the measure does not apply to any businesses that sell food — so stores that sell alcohol and lottery tickets in addition to food won't be affected.
"Some people have a long way to go to get groceries," Paulsen said. "We're not trying to make it impossible for anyone who needs assistance to get assistance, but just be responsible and make sure there's not any abuses going on."
Paulsen's legislation also extends funding for the welfare programs through next September. Friday, the House will vote on a separate, $1 trillion spending bill to fund the the federal government through the remainder of this fiscal year.