In an interview with NBC News, Rep. Paul Ryan claimed that Obama’s policies are the reason why people in poverty are poor. Ryan tried to convince the poor to blame Obama, not Republicans for their struggles.
Video from NBC News:
Rep. Ryan spoke in his usual Ayn Rand code when asked by NBC News to talk about poverty. Ryan blamed Obama’s policies for creating more poverty, “This top down big government approach that the president has taken, I think the evidence is very clear has been proven not to help people out of poverty, but more importantly to trap people in poverty. He’s pushing the same old ideas that have been proven to fail. He’s pushing polarization. He’s pushing big government regulations, and taxes, and spending that actually make it harder to create jobs. That make it harder to get jobs and get out of poverty. Everybody cares that we get people out of poverty, but unfortunately, these strategies have failed miserably to the point where we have the highest poverty rates in a generation.”
Ryan said that he thought it was insensitive to not have work requirements in food stamps, “I think it’s insensitive to not have a work requirement for food stamps, and what I mean when I say that is: our goal in these programs is not to make poverty easier to handle and tolerate and live with, our goal in these program ought to be to give people a temporary hand so that they can get out of poverty.”
Paul Ryan was absolutely and comprehensively lying about what the president has done. Obama hasn’t pushed big government and taxes. In fact, the president is the biggest tax cutter in American history. The regulations that he was mentioned was Randian code for Obamacare. Obama hasn’t pushed polarization. It is Ryan and his fellow House Republicans who have repeatedly tried to cut food and medical aid for the poor while giving the wealthy huge tax cuts. Ryan’s own budget guts or privatizes programs for the needy, while giving millionaires an additional $265,000 a year on top of the Bush tax cuts.
When Paul Ryan mentioned a work requirement for food stamps, what he really meant was the Soultherland Amendment, which is anything but your standard work requirement. According to the CBPP, “It would allow states to end benefits for most adults who receive or apply for SNAP — including parents with young children and many people with disabilities — if they are not working or participating in a work or training program for at least 20 hours a week. The amendment provides no jobs and no funds for work or training programs, and it does not require states to make any work opportunities available. People who want to work and are looking for a job but haven’t found one could be cut off.”
Every time Rep. Ryan mentions poverty, he is trying to hide his true agenda. Paul Ryan’s mission is to gut anti-poverty programs while giving more tax cuts to millionaires like himself. His Randian ideology tells him that he is helping the poor by making them “less dependent” on government. His idea of help involves turning them loose with no help or assistance, so that they are liberated from the clutches of “big government.”
What Ryan was trying to do in this interview was convince poor people that their poverty is Obama’s fault. Although the Congressional Research Service found that the increase in poverty since 2007 was caused by the policies that Ryan advocates for, “The increase in poverty over the past four years reflects the effects of the economic recession that began in December 2007. Some analysts expect poverty to remain above pre-recessionary levels for as long as a decade, and perhaps longer, given the depth of the recession and slow pace of economic recovery.”
Obama didn’t cause the increase in poverty. Republicans like Paul Ryan did. Rep. Ryan wants poor people to demand that their food and medical care be taken away from them. He wants the poor to urge congress to give their meager resources to the wealthiest Americans.
Paul Ryan worships at the church of the upward redistribution of wealth, and he’s trying to convince the poor that their poverty is all Barack Obama’s fault.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association