AUGUSTA, Maine –
Candi, 30, of Augusta, Maine, is a career welfare recipient who knows just who to blame for her station in life – and depending on who you ask, it’s either the least or most likely candidate: the US government.
“Honestly, I think it’s all part of the conspiracy to keep the poor white woman down. If Obama would get the economy together and make some better jobs, maybe I’d take one. But what am I going to do, go work at McDonalds, and deal with bitchy customers all day so I can make less than my assistance benefits? F— that,” said Candi, who said she’d only speak with us if we didn’t use her last name, which is Sutphen.
But according to Candi, since she has been out of the working world so long, even McDonalds doesn’t find her to be a worthy candidate. “No one wants to hire you when the last job you had was almost 6 years ago,” she claims. When asked how she got into the welfare system in the first place, Sutphen says the blame lies with Obama.
“He screwed the economy all up as soon as he got into office, and I got laid off from my great call center job. I got unemployment, and at first I did look for work, but after so much rejection, I stopped really trying, and just I’d applied for random jobs I knew were hiring, but I wasn’t even qualified for in the first place. Obama put through so many unemployment extensions, I had a free ride for almost two years.” Candi says by the end of her time on unemployment, she had given birth to a daughter, Emma, and switched over to Maine’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program. That was 3 years ago.
“I tell you what. If I ever did have to find a job, like really find a job, I’d make sure they scheduled me just enough so I didn’t lost my benefits. My friend Desiree works full-time, and now she doesn’t qualify for food stamps or heating assistance. She’s more broke now than she ever was before,” stated Candi. “People think my life is easy. Essentially I’m getting paid to sit on Facebook all day. Granted, that’s nice, but it gets boring, and boring is hard. I’m actually very depressed now. After a full day of watching Judge Judy and Maury, I don’t even feel like doing the dishes.”
The TANF program in Maine has a five-year cap on benefits. When asked what she would do after that, Candi answered, “If things keep going on like this I’m going to apply for disability. Either my lungs are gonna go from these cheap cigarettes I’m forced to smoke, or my doctor at the free clinic says I’ll get it for my depression.”
When asked what would help turn things around, Candi brightened a little. “If I had a car I think I’d be happier, and if I was happier I’d be much more motivated to look for work. I mean, we can afford to drop all these bombs, and feed people overseas, but we can’t make sure our own citizens have transportation. That’s seriously messed up,” said Candi. “I’m not asking for anything fancy like a Subaru or nothing. Just something like a Jetta or a Neon, you know? Not too old, though. Yeah, that would truly make me the happiest girl in the world.”