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Majority back welfare applicant drug tests

July 20, 2011 at 5:07 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, July 20 (UPI) -- A majority of Americans support automatic drug testing for welfare applicants for illegal drug use, a Rasmussen Reports survey released Wednesday indicated.

Results indicated 53 percent of likely voters said they believe all welfare applicants should undergo drug testing for illegal substances before getting benefits. Thirteen percent supported random drug testing while 29 percent said applicants should be tested only if there is reasonable suspicion they are using illegal drugs.

Florida and Missouri have measures requiring some form of drug testing during the welfare application process, with Florida requiring all applicants be tested.

A plurality -- 35 percent -- of Americans said they thought people already receiving benefits should be tested only when there is a reasonable suspicion of drug use, Rasmussen said. Thirty-one percent support random drug testing for welfare recipients, while 29 percent said all recipients should be tested regularly.

Seventy percent of likely voters said welfare recipients found to be using illegal drugs should have their benefits cut off, while 15 percent said they were opposed.

Results are based on a national survey of 1,000 likely voters conducted Monday and Tuesday. The margin of error is 3 percentage points.

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