COLUMBIA, S.C. (WACH/AP) -- Gov. Nikki Haley's Democratic opponent says her administration hasn't moved more than 20,000 people from welfare to work as claimed, since many of those people still earn so little, they continue to receive government assistance.
State Sen. Vincent Sheheen accused Haley on Wednesday of being dishonest when touting the program's success. The Camden Democrat says she implies that more than 20,000 people secured a job that took them off assistance rolls.
Beyond including meager jobs that don't pay a living wage, he says, the numbers also include people who temporarily get off welfare but then lose a job and re-enroll.
Haley spokesman Doug Mayer says the welfare-to-work program provides opportunities to find work.
"Governor Haley has always believed that the best way to take care of our South Carolina families is to provide more and better opportunities for them to find work in our state - and that is exactly what the welfare to work program has done," Mayer said in a statement. "Vincent Sheheen and his liberal allies prefer having people stay on welfare, but the governor knows that working is one of the keys to the American Dream, and she couldn't be more thrilled that this program has moved over 20,000 South Carolinians from welfare to work."
Department of Social Services officials say even a part-time job still results in less assistance.