From https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2016/02/12/how-the-united-states-built-a-welfare-state-for-the-wealthy/ --

The United States government spends more on social welfare programs per capita than most European countries once we include both traditional public spending and tax subsidies. But contrary to European welfare states, benefits are not concentrated on the poor in the U.S.

In essence, there are two American welfare states. A public one built primarily by Democrats that serves the elderly and the poor and a private one built by both parties but expanded by Republicans that provides welfare to the wealthy.