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Politics & Government

Drug testing for TANF recipients defeated

A bill to require people who receive aid from  the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families program to undergo drug testing has failed in the North Dakota House.

Bill supporters say they wanted to provide an incentive for low income people to stay off drugs. But the opponents say they targeted the wrong group.

"Forty-five percent of the people on TANF are children only," said Rep. Bette Grande (R-Fargo). "Is that who we're going to drug test? Those are children who are living with grandparents, aunts and uncles or other people who are taking care of them while their parents are unable to do so."

Some lawmakers said they should have targeted recipients of SNAP -- "Supplementary Nutrition Assistance Program." They say there seems to be a lot of questions surrounding some of the expenditures from that program.

The bill failed 72-19.

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