We hypothesize that welfare chauvinistic legislation, despite growing political strength of populist right wing parties in Europe, is modest and ambiguous. Welfare state reforms intended to directly exclude immigrants from collective social protection are impeded in the legislative process by coalitional dynamics and anti-discrimination laws. Our proposition is substantiated by a quantitative analysis of adopted legislation in labor market policy in Denmark and the Netherlands since the mid-1970s. However, clear signs of indirect welfare chauvinism are revealed in a detailed qualitative study of all significant labor market reforms in Denmark 2001-2011. Welfare chauvinism remains ambiguous and observed most strongly at the level of political communication. This leads to the conclusion that direct welfare chauvinism indeed is rare, while there are strong indications of indirect welfare chauvinism.