welfare state


Definition of welfare state

1 : a social system based on the assumption by a political state of primary responsibility for the individual and social welfare of its citizens
2 : a nation or state characterized by the operation of the welfare state system

Examples of welfare state in a Sentence

supporters of the welfare state
Recent Examples on the Web The dysfunctions of the welfare state are well understood, at least among conservatives and some of the more courageous progressives. Mario Loyola, National Review, "The New Segregationists," 20 Aug. 2020 The social compromises of the postwar welfare state have given way to more primitive forms of capitalism that in turn invite angry reactions by the citizenry. Robert Kuttner, The New York Review of Books, "Can We Fix Capitalism?," 8 Sep. 2020 By 1956, the Republican Party platform was celebrating its accomplishments in expanding the welfare state. Bruce Bartlett, The New Republic, "When the Republican Party Was Sane," 24 Aug. 2020 Of course, these are the very failures that conservatives have spent generations criticizing the welfare state for. Mario Loyola, National Review, "The New Segregationists," 20 Aug. 2020 The robust welfare state offers much of the economic support that the extended family might otherwise provide. Sarah Todd, Quartz, "Moving back in with your parents may be your worst fear—and your best idea yet," 19 Aug. 2020 With the advent of the New Deal and the social-welfare state, the machines began to die off, and the police were on their own. Kevin Baker, Harper's Magazine, "Which Side Are You On?," 18 Aug. 2020 Both countries shut down large swathes of their economies, creating the sudden and unexpected loss of jobs and incomes that the welfare state was designed to cushion. Philip Cross, National Review, "What Canada’s Response to the Pandemic Says about Canada — and the U.S.," 12 Aug. 2020 So, Republicans bent on deconstructing the welfare state have turned from real legislative battles to guerilla attacks—the White House’s hit on fair housing regulations for instance, or the ongoing legal campaign to undermine Obamacare. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, "The 2020 Election Doesn’t Really Matter to Republicans," 30 July 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'welfare state.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of welfare state

1894, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of welfare state was in 1894

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Statistics for welfare state

Last Updated

23 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Welfare state.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/welfare%20state. Accessed 27 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for welfare state

welfare state


English Language Learners Definition of welfare state

: a social system in which a government is responsible for the economic and social welfare of its citizens and has policies to provide free health care, money for people without jobs, etc. also : a country that has such a system

More from Merriam-Webster on welfare state

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Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about welfare state

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