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News Saturday, Jan 9 2016

At Kemp Forum, Republicans Continue Their War On Poor Americans

Jan 09, 2016

Today in South Carolina, Speaker Paul Ryan is moderating the Kemp Forum on Expanding Opportunity, which features six GOP presidential hopefuls, Governor Nikki Haley, who never misses an opportunity to promote herself for this year’s GOP Veepstakes, and Senator Lindsey Graham.

The Republicans hope that talking about poverty will help voters forget that they have acted little to help low income families. Instead, the Kemp Forum will make it clearer than ever that the GOP’s days of “compassionate conservatism” are a relic of the past. Why else would Ryan be the first choice to moderate a forum on “combating” poverty?

As the newly minted leader of House Republicans, Ryan is well known for championing extreme anti-poverty measures. He’s even earned the title “Robin Hood in reverse”  for pushing policies that give to the rich and “punish the poor.” Across the GOP, proposing drastic cuts to critical programs like food assistance — combativeness over compassion — has become boilerplate policy. Today, American Bridge is releasing a new digital ad targeted to the Kemp Forum that highlights the Republican war on poor Americans called, “GOP Forum to Expand Opportunity But… Not For You.” 

Each speaker at the Kemp Forum is pushing policies that would hurt working families and Americans striving to get ahead:
  • In 2012, Paul Ryan‘s proposed budget would have given $10 trillion in tax cuts to the highest-earners in the country, while slashing funding to Medicare, Medicaid, Food Assistance, and Pell Grants. After his 2014 “poverty tour,” Ryanalso proposed cutting between $135 billion and $150 billion from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP.)
  • South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has said she “will not expand Medicaid. Ever.” and believes it’s too “easy” to get welfare, saying “no one improves their lot in life” on the assistance program.
  • A supporter of the Ryan budget,Marco Rubiointroduced a plan that will actually increase poverty, especially among children according to experts. Rubio also claimed in his book that welfare discourages work because “they lose more in benefits than they would earn in salary.” PolitiFact rated this statement “Mostly False.”
  • A supporter of the Ryan budget, Ben Carsonchanged his position on raising the minimum wage and said he would not increase it.
  • Jeb Bushcopied Ryan’s plan to cut safety net programs and voucherize Medicare. In 1994, Bushalso told women on welfare to “get a husband.”
  • A supporter of the Ryan budget, Chris Christievetoed a bipartisan bill that “would have prevented 160,000 low-income households [from losing] an estimate $90 in” food assistance. Christie’sadministration also ended New Jersey’s housing program for the disabled and their caretakers who were unable to work.
  • According to the Des Moines Register, Carly Fiorina“believes people develop a dependence on welfare programs that causes them not to seek out better opportunities for fear of losing their benefits.”
  • The USDA ranked Ohio among “the worst state in the nation for food security.” Ohio Governor John Kasichmade the problem worse by rewriting welfare laws.
  • Mike Huckabeerefused to support the Ryan budget, because he said it wasn’t “aggressive enough.”


Kemp Forum on Expanding Opportunity: Attempting To Alleviate Poverty With A Little more conversation, A little less action


Elected Officials Moderating The Kemp Forum Supported Failed Policies That Targeted The Poor

Speaker Paul Ryan – Anti-Poverty Crusader Is Actually GOP Thought Leader On Making Poverty Worse

The Ryan Budget Would Raise Taxes On Low-Income Americans And Institute Severe Spending Cuts On Medicare, Medicaid, Food Assistance, And Pell Grants
Ryan Budget Would Actually Raise Taxes On Many Low-Income Individuals By Not Extending Recent Tax Cuts For Working Poor Enacted Under President Obama. According to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, “Many low-income working families would actually see an increase in their tax burdens under the Ryan plan. While the Ryan budget makes permanent all of the Bush tax cuts for high-income households that are slated to expire at the end of 2012, it would not extend the tax cuts for working-poor households that were enacted under President Obama and also are scheduled to expire at the end of this year.” [Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, 3/27/12]


Ryan Budget Proposed $10 Trillion In Tax Cuts For High-Income Americans Alongside Severe Spending Cuts To Medicare, Medicaid, Food Assistance And Pell Grants. According to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, “These tax cuts all would come on top of President Bush’s tax cuts, which also are very expensive and tilted toward the nation’s most affluent people and which Chairman Ryan would make permanent. The Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center (TPC) estimates that extending the Bush and other expiring tax cuts would cost $5.4 trillion over the next decade and that Chairman Ryan’s additional tax cuts would cost another $4.6 trillion. That means Chairman Ryan is proposing nearly $10 trillion in tax cuts (relative to current law) that heavily favor high-income Americans even while claiming that his budget’s severe cuts in basic low-income programs like Medicaid, food stamps, and Pell Grants are needed to rein in unsustainable deficits.” [Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, 3/22/12]


Ryan Budget Is “Robin Hood In Reverse – On Steroids” – Results In Redistribution Of Wealth From The Poor To Rich.According to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, “The new Ryan budget is a remarkable document — one that, for most of the past half-century, would have been outside the bounds of mainstream discussion due to its extreme nature. In essence, this budget is Robin Hood in reverse — on steroids. It would likely produce the largest redistribution of income from the bottom to the top in modern U.S. history and likely increase poverty and inequality more than any other budget in recent times (and possibly in the nation’s history). It also would stand a core principle of the Bowles-Simpson fiscal commission’s report on its head — that policymakers should reduce the deficit in a way that does not increase poverty or widen inequality.” [Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, 3/21/12]


Ryan Budget Would Oversee Massive Tax Cuts For Wealthy Individuals And Corporations. According to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, “Despite warning that the nation faces the ‘perils of debt,’ House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan introduced a budget on March 20 whose tax proposals would be extremely costly and would disproportionately favor the nation’s highest-income households and large corporations. His budget would cut the top marginal income tax rate, now 35 percent but scheduled to rise next year to 39.6 percent, to 25 percent. It would cut the corporate income tax rate from 35 percent to 25 percent and eliminate taxes on the foreign profits of U.S.-based multinationals. It would eliminate the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT), designed to ensure that high-income people pay at least a minimum level of tax. And it would eliminate health reform’s increase in the Medicare tax for high-income individuals.” [Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, 3/22/12]

Center On Budget And Policy Priorities President Bob Greenstein Opinion Headline: “Paul Ryan’s Plan To Merge Safety Net Programs Could Increase Poverty, Not Reduce It.” [Bob Greenstein – Huffington Post, 1/6/16]

Greenstein: “The Proposal Would Jeopardize Basic Nutrition Assistance For Poor Children, Which Research Has Shown Reduces Child Malnutrition And Improves Children’s Long Term Prospects.” According to an opinion by CBPP President Bob Greenstein for the Huffington Post, “The proposal would jeopardize basic nutrition assistance for poor children, which research has shown reduces child malnutrition and improves children’s long-term prospects.  As noted, poor families and children would no longer be entitled to food assistance in states operating under Ryan’s Opportunity Grant, and could be denied or put on waiting lists.  This problem would worsen during economic downturns — since SNAP would no longer respond to changes in the economy — and if states shifted funds from SNAP to other programs.” [Bob Greenstein – Huffington Post, 1/6/16]


Center On Budget And Policy Priorities Headline: “Ryan Block Grant Proposal Would Cut Medicaid By More Than One-Quarter By 2024 And More After That.” [Edwin Park & Matt Broaddus – Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 4/4/14]

Ryan Had No Plans To Pass Meaningful Anti-Poverty Legislation In 2016

Senior House Republican Aides And Lawmakers Told Politico That Ryan Was Unlikely To Hold Votes “On Many Of The Agenda Items The Party Plans To Unveil” And That His Ideas Would “Just Remain… Ideas.” According to Politico, “Speaker Paul Ryan has said he wants to ‘go big on ideas’ in 2016 to give his party concrete policies to run on and voters an alternative to what Democrats are offering. Senior House Republican aides and lawmakers say they do not plan to hold votes on many of the agenda items the party plans to unveil — such as a health care plan to replace Obamacare, or tax reform — because of a tight legislative calendar over the next few months and the reality that none of the bills would be signed by the president, anyway.” [Politico, 1/7/16]

Ryan’s Lip-Service To The Anti-Poverty Cause Was Belied By His Proposals To Cut Anti-Poverty Programs & His Votes Against Raising The Minimum Wage

MSNBC Headline: “After Poverty Tour, Ryan Proposes Cutting Food Stamps.” [, 4/1/14]

  • MSNBC: “How Does The New And Improved Rep. Paul Ryan, Scourge Of Poverty, Plan To Revamp The Anti-Hunger Safety Net In The Face Of Historic Levels Of Food Insecurity? By Cutting Food Stamps.” According to MSNBC, “So how does the new and improved Rep. Paul Ryan, scourge of poverty, plan to revamp the anti-hunger safety net in the face of historic levels of food insecurity? By cutting food stamps.” [, 4/1/14]
  • Ryan’s Plan Would Cut Between $135 Billion And $150 Billion From SNAP Over The Next Decade, Savings Which The CBPP Said Would Have To Come Through Reduced Benefits. According to MSNBC, “The 2014 Ryan budget includes plans to institute more stringent work requirements for food stamps and convert the program from a federal entitlement into a system of block grants. While the plan itself is short on specifics, the non-partisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) estimates that the suggested changes could slice anywhere between $135 billion and $150 billion out of the program over the next decade. ‘The only way to get to those savings is to reduce the number of people eligible for the program or to reduce the benefit levels they’re eligible for, or both,’ said Stacy Dean, CBPP’s vice president for food assistance policy.” [, 4/1/14]

The Nation: “Ryan Has Voted Against Raising The Minimum Wage At Least 10 Times Since He’s Been In Office.” According to the Nation, “ Unfortunately, [Paul] Ryan has voted against raising the minimum wage at least 10 times since he’s been in office.” [The Nation, 12/4/15]


Sen. Tim Scott – Speaker Ryan’s Moderator Wingman And Budget Fan

Sen. Scott’s Anti-Poverty Plan Was To Repeal The Affordable Care Act’s Employer Mandate; Sen. Scott Believed You Could “Think Your Way Out Of Poverty”

When Asked About Raising The Minimum Wage, Sen. Scott’s Answer Was To Instead Repeal The Affordable Care Act’s Requirement That Large Employers Provide Insurance To Anyone Working More Than 30 Hours A Week. According to an opinion by Eric Black for Minn Post, “Can you follow that? He didn’t say this terribly clearly but [Sen. Tim] Scott’s answer to whether to raise the minimum wage is to, instead, repeal the provision of the Affordable Care Act that requires large employers to provide health insurance as a benefit to all employees who work 30 hours a week or more. Sen. Scott has introduced a bill to repeal that provision, and he believes it would do more to help struggling workers than would raising the minimum wage. [Eric Black – MinnPost, 2/21/14]

Sen. Scott’s “Passion For Conservative Values” Began When His Mentor, A Chick Fil-A Operator, Told Him You Could “Think Your Way Out Of Poverty.” According to Sen. Tim Scott’s campaign website bio, “Tim was raised in a single parent household in North Charleston, seeing his mom work 16 hour days to keep food on the table and a roof over their heads. He got his first job, changing oil at a gas station, when he was 13. After almost failing out of high school as a freshman, he was fortunate to meet his mentor, a Chick Fil-a operator named John Moniz, who helped teach him conservative values. Through the love and strength imparted by his mom, and Moniz’s idea that you could ‘think your way out of poverty,’ Tim’s passion for conservative values began.” [, accessed 1/8/16]

Scott Supported The Ryan Budget

Scott Voted For H.C. Res. 34, Paul Ryan’s Budget, On April 15, 2011. [FreedomWorks Scorecard & Roll Call, accessed 1/7/16]


Gov. Nikki Haley – Moderating, But Not Moderate On Poverty Policy

Gov. Haley Argued That “No One Improves Their Lot In Life” On Welfare Because It Was Too Easy To Receive Benefits

Gov. Nikki Haley: “With Washington Having Its Way, We Would Handle Welfare Recipients By Asking A Few Simple Questions, Effectively Checking A Box, And Handing Over A Check.” According to Gov. Nikki Haley’s 2014 State of the State address, “Previously, with Washington having its way, we would handle welfare recipients by asking a few simple questions, effectively checking a box, and handing over a check. Easy in, easy out.” [Nikki Haley – State of the State 2014, 1/22/14]

  • Haley: “But No One Improves Their Lot In Life That Way. Now We Do Things Differently.” According to Gov. Nikki Haley’s 2014 State of the State address, “But no one improves their lot in life that way. Now we do things differently. Instead of just asking routine questions designed to do little more than meet numbers and process people, we dig deeper.” [Nikki Haley – State of the State 2014, 1/22/14]

Haley’s South Carolina Was One Of Five States Without A Minimum Wage

South Carolina Was One Of Five States Without A Minimum Wage, Instead Defaulting To The Federal Minimum. According to the National Conference on State Legislators, “Five states have not adopted a state minimum wage: Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Tennessee.  New Hampshire repealed their state minimum wage in 2011 but adopted the federal minimum wage by reference.” [NCSL, 1/1/16]

Haley: South Carolina “Will Not Expand Medicaid. Ever” Even If Supreme Court Took Subsidies Away From 154,000 South Carolinians Who Relied On Them For Purchasing health Care

Haley Stated That South Carolina Would Not Set Up A Health Insurance Exchange Even If The Supreme Court Had Ruled Against Federal Subsidies For Citizens In States Without Exchanges. According to the Post and Courier, “South Carolina will not establish its own insurance exchange, no matter what the Supreme Court decides this summer, Gov. Nikki Haley said Tuesday. That decision may affect more than 154,000 South Carolinians who receive federal subsidies to pay for their Obamacare policies, a new federal report shows. More than 90 percent of Affordable Care Act customers in South Carolina receive financial assistance to reduce the amount they pay for insurance each month.” [Post and Courier, 6/2/15]

Haley Said That South Carolina “Will Not Expand Medicaid. Ever.” According to the Wall Street Journal, “Many of the Republican governors who have opted out of the expansion argue it would cost their states money. Mr. [Bobby] Jindal, for example, estimates it would cost Louisiana $1.7 billion over the next decade and shift nearly 250,000 residents of the state from private coverage to Medicaid. South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has said her state ‘will not expand Medicaid. Ever.’” [Wall Street Journal, 11/21/13]


GOP Presidential Hopefuls Scheduled To Speak At Kemp Forum Proposed Anti-Poverty Policies That Would Actually Increase Poverty


Sen. Marco Rubio – A Man With A Plan… To Increase Poverty

Rubio Released An Anti-Poverty Plan Which Would Actually Increase Poverty, Especially Among Children

Jared Bernstein: Rubio’s Plan Would “Replace The EITC With A Different Wage Subsidy That Will Increase Working Poverty Among Single-Parent Families With Kids” And “Would Increase Poverty Overall.” According to a blog post by the Center for Budget and Policy Priority’s Jared Bernstein, “Sen. Rubio Proposes to Kill the Countercyclicality of the Safety Net …and, if I’m understanding a sketchy proposal, to replace the EITC with a different wage subsidy that will increase working poverty among single-parent families with kids (I suspect it would increase poverty overall–i.e., a poverty measure that correctly includes the value of tax credits–but not sure).” [Jared Bernstein –, 1/8/14]

Bernstein: “There’s Other Stuff To Worry About” In Rubio’s Plan, But “Those Look Like The Biggies… Two Big Ideas In A Poverty Speech That Look Very Much To Me Like They Will Increase Poverty In Recession And Increase Poverty Among Children.” According to a blog post by the Center for Budget and Policy Priority’s Jared Bernstein, “There’s other stuff to worry about in here, but those look like the biggies to me right now.  Two big ideas in a poverty speech that look very much to me like they will increase poverty in recession and increase poverty among children.” [Jared Bernstein –, 1/8/14]

Rubio Said Entitlement And Welfare Programs “Weakened Us As A People” And Claimed That Welfare Discouraged Work, Which Politifact Said Was Mostly False

Rubio On Welfare Programs: “These Programs Actually Weakened Us As A People” And That Social Institutions Like Neighbors, Families, And Churches Used To Take Care Of Those Responsibilities. According to Talking Points Memo, “With a tone that suggested he spoke more in sorrow than in anger, [Marco] Rubio said that though the creation of a welfare state ‘was well-intentioned, it was doomed to fail from the start.’ ‘These programs actually weakened us as a people. You see, almost forever, it was institutions in society that assumed the role of taking care of one another. If someone was sick in your family, you took care of them. If a neighbor met misfortune, you took care of them. You saved for your retirement and your future because you had to. We took these things upon ourselves in our communities, our families, and our homes, and our churches and our synagogues. But all that changed when the government began to assume those responsibilities.’” [Talking Points Memo, 8/24/11]

Rubio Said That “Social Security, Medicare And Medicaid Are Bankrupting Our Country.” According to Tallahassee Democrat, “Rubio said entitlement spending, which the legislation didn’t address, also must be reduced. […] ‘While reducing discretionary spending is an important goal, Washington is devoting a disproportionate amount of time to a tiny slice of the budget while ignoring the fact that continued inaction on saving Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid is bankrupting our country.” [Tallahassee Democrat, 3/10/11]

Sen. Marco Rubio Claimed That Welfare Discourages Work Because “They Lose More In Benefits Than They Would Earn In Salary,” Which Politifact Rated Mostly False. According to Politifact, “In his book, Rubio wrote, ‘If people work and make more money, they lose more in benefits than they would earn in salary.’ […] Further, there are scenarios where a low-income individual with children receiving assistance from the government through multiple programs could potentially lose more in benefits than he or she would gain by a slight or modest increase in income. But these examples are a small minority. The vast majority of people face some higher taxes and lost benefits when they make more money, but they would still take home more in pay than they would under a lower salary. The statement contains some element of truth but ignores critical facts that would leave a different impression. We rate the statement Mostly False.” [Politifact, 1/14/15]

Rubio Supported The Ryan Budget

Rubio Voted Against Restoring Roughly $430 Billion In Unexplained Medicare Cuts In Senate Republicans’ FY 2016 Budget.In March 2015, Rubio voted against an amendment to the Senate’s FY 2016 budget resolution that, according to Sen Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) in the Congressional Record, would have “reject[ed] the $435 billion in Medicare cuts that are in this budget resolution.” The amendment was rejected by a vote of 46 to 54. [Senate Vote 111, 3/26/15; Congressional Record, 3/26/15; Congressional Actions, S. Con. Res. 11]

2011: Rubio Effectively Voted For FY 2012 Ryan Budget, Which Replaced Medicare With A Premium Support Plan. In May 2011, Rubio effectively voted for replacing Medicare with a premium support plan, as part of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) proposed budget resolution covering fiscal years 2012 to 2021. According to the Congressional Research Service, “Under the new system, Medicare would pay a portion of the beneficiaries’ premiums, i.e., provide ‘premium support.’ The payments would be adjusted for age, health status, and income and would be paid directly by the government to the insurance plan selected by the Medicare beneficiary. In addition, plans with healthier enrollees, would be required to help subsidize plans with less healthy enrollees.” The vote was on a motion to proceed to consider the House-passed budget resolution, which the Senate rejected by a vote of 40 to 57. [Senate Vote 77, 5/25/11; CRS Report #R41767, 4/13/11]

  • Wall Street Journal: Ryan Plan “Would Essentially End Medicare.”According to the Wall Street Journal, “Republicans will present this week a 2012 budget proposal that would cut more than $4 trillion from federal spending projected over the next decade and transform the Medicare health program for the elderly, a move that will dramatically reshape the budget debate in Washington. […] The plan would essentially end Medicare, which now pays most of the health-care bills for 48 million elderly and disabled Americans, as a program that directly pays those bills. Mr. Ryan and other conservatives say this is necessary because of the program’s soaring costs.” [Wall Street Journal,4/4/11]

Rubio Embraced The Ryan Budget Plan To Voucherize Medicare. According to the Washington Times, “Speaking at the National Press Club in Washington, the Florida Republican [Marco Rubio] said he supports gradually raising the Social Security retirement age, which now sits at 67, for future beneficiaries, and embraced Rep. Paul Ryan’s push to transition Medicare into a ‘premium-support’ plan, where seniors would be given a voucher to buy insurance on the private market.” [Washington Times, 5/13/14]


Dr. Ben Carson – A “Strong Desire” To Cut Anti-Poverty programs

Dr. Carson Reversed Prior Support For Raising The Minimum Wage, And Said That He Wanted To End Programs That “Create Dependency”

Dr. Ben Carson: “I Have A Strong Desire To Get Rid Of Programs That Create Dependency In Able-Bodied People.” According to Politico, “‘Many people are critical of me because they say, ‘Carson wants to get rid of all the safety nets and welfare programs even though he must have benefited from them,’’ he said. ‘This is a blatant lie. I have no desire to get rid of safety nets for people who need them. I have a strong desire to get rid of programs that create dependency in able-bodied people.’” [Politico, 5/4/15]

Carson Reversed Prior Support For Raising The Minimum Wage, Saying That Raising It Would Increase Joblessness And That He Would Not Raise It. According to the New York Times, “Mr. Carson said at the debate on Tuesday that he would not raise the minimum wage — a notable shift in position compared with views he expressed earlier in the campaign (and even at an earlier debate). […]But by Tuesday’s debate, Mr. Carson had fallen in line with the Republican orthodoxy on the subject. He asserted that raising the minimum wage increased joblessness, a claim about which economists disagree. Asked point-blank if he would raise the minimum wage, he responded, ‘I would not raise it.’” [New York Times, 11/12/15]

Carson Supported The Ryan Budget

Real Clear Politics Headline: “Dr. Ben Carson On Paul Ryan’s Budget: ‘It Works.’” [Real Clear Politics, 3/12/13]

Gov. Jeb Bush – Nothing Joyful About An Anti-Poverty Plan That Eliminates Food And Housing Assistance Programs

Bush “Played An Outsize Role” In Blocking Medicaid Expansion In Florida

Gov. Jeb Bush Opposed Medicaid Expansion In Florida. According to, “Jeb Bush opposed to Florida Medicaid expansion. Florida’s former governor Jeb Bush isn’t in alignment with the Sunshine State’s current Republican executive on the issue of accepting federal dollars to expand Medicaid coverage to more lower income residents.” [, 3/6/13]

Bush “Played An Outsize Role In Getting Republicans In The State House To Come Together In Opposition To Medicaid Expansion.” According to the Daily Beast, “Weatherford, who has endorsed the former governor and is a campaign surrogate, told The Daily Beast that Bush played an outsize role in getting Republicans in the state house to come together in opposition to Medicaid expansion. And he said Bush’s role was timely; the former governor spoke with House members after the Republican-controlled Senate passed legislation that would have accepted the expansion.” [Daily Beast, 12/29/15]

Bush Attacked Women On Welfare, Telling Them To “Get A Husband”

CNN Headline: “Jeb Bush To Women On Welfare In 1994: ‘Get A Husband.’” [, 6/11/15]

Bush’s Entitlement Plan Copied Paul Ryan’s And Voucherized Medicare; Bush’s Anti-Poverty Plan Copied Paul Ryan’s And Eliminated Food And Housing Assistance

Politico: “Bush’s Plan Would Transform Medicare Into A Premium Support Program, Adopting One Of Rep. Paul Ryan’s Most Controversial Budget Ideas.” According to Politico, “Bush’s plan would transform Medicare into a premium support program, adopting one of Rep. Paul Ryan’s most controversial budget ideas to give beneficiaries a set amount of money to purchase either a private insurance plan or traditional Medicare. But Democrats have demonized Medicare privatization plans the past two election cycles as shredding the safety net and cast Republican backers as granny killers.” [Politico, 10/27/15]

Bush Released An Anti-Poverty Plan On January 8th Which Reuters Said “Eliminates Food Stamps, Housing Assistance Programs.” According to Reuters, “Jeb Bush’s Welfare Plan Eliminates Food Stamps, Housing Assistance Programs […]Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush on Friday proposed an overhaul of the U.S. welfare system that would eliminate what he called failing programs for the poor and send the federal dollars from them to the states to develop their own plans. Bush, continuing an effort to position himself as the most serious, substantive candidate in the race for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, laid out his plan ahead of a poverty forum in South Carolina on Saturday.” [Reuters via Huffington Post, 1/8/16]

Bush’s Plan Would “Eliminate The Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, Formerly Called Food Stamps, Housing Assistance Programs And A Cash Program Called Temporary Assistance For Needy Families.” According to Reuters, “Bush, a former Florida governor, would take some controversial steps as part of his welfare plan. He would eliminate the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, formerly called food stamps, housing assistance programs and a cash program called Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.” [Reuters via Huffington Post, 1/8/16]

Bush’s Plan Would Create Block Grants Which Would Include “Work Requirements And Time Limits For Able-Bodied Adults.” According to Reuters, “To encourage more Americans on welfare to seek jobs, Bush would include in ‘Right to Rise’ grants work requirements and time limits for able-bodied adults.” [Reuters via Huffington Post, 1/8/16]


Gov. Chris Christie – Time For Some Anti-Poverty Program Problems In New Jersey

Gov. Christie Repeatedly Vetoed Or Ended Programs To Help The Poor In New Jersey

Gov. Chris Christie Vetoed A Bipartisan Bill That “Would Have Prevented 160,000 Low-Income Households [From Losing] An Estimated $90 Per Month In Food Stamps.” According to, “The state Assembly today failed to override Gov. Chris Christie’s veto of a bill that would have restored an average of $90 worth of food stamps to 160,000 senior citizens, disabled citizens and children. […] The bill (2956) was supported by Republicans and Democrats when it passed, but 10 Republicans who voted yes did not support the attempt to override Christie’s veto today. The bill would have prevented 160,000 low-income households [sic] an estimated $90 per month in food stamps, in the wake of action by Congress to change the law on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program last year to curb fraud.” [, 1/29/15]

Think Progress: “About 11,000 New Jersey Residents Are Set To Lose Their Food Stamps After Gov. Chris Christie (R)’s Administration Said It Won’t Seek Any Waivers From The Program’s Work Requirements” Due To Local Unemployment.According to Think Progress, “About 11,000 New Jersey residents are set to lose their food stamps after Gov. Chris Christie (R)’s administration said it won’t seek any waivers from the program’s work requirements. Since 2009, state governors have been encouraged to get waivers from the federal government for the requirement that able-bodied, childless adults work at least 20 hours a week to enroll in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), or food stamps, thanks to a weak economy where jobs have been scarce. Those waivers are now being rescinded in states with unemployment levels below 10 percent. Yet Christie and other governors can seek county and municipal waivers for the areas in their states that still have struggling job markets. Forty-two cities, counties, and townships in New Jersey will qualify as ‘Labor Surplus Areas’ in 2016, according to the Department of Labor, meaning that there are too many job seekers for the number of available jobs.” [Think Progress, 1/2/16]

NJ.Com Headline: “Christie Administration’s Abrupt End Of N.J. Housing Program May Strand 3,000 Residents.” [,10/10/15]

  • The Christie Administration Ended A Program Housing Nearly 3100 People Unable To Work Because They Were Either Disabled Or Taking Care Of A Disabled Spouse Or Child. According to, “Chiaravallo is one of 51 people in Hunterdon County and 3,019 statewide enrolled in one of two temporary housing hardship programs that have paid most of their rent. They qualified because they are unable to work — either because they are chronically ill and disabled or are taking care of a sick or disabled spouse or child.  After running out of time on the Emergency Assistance a homelessness prevention program, they were granted a three-year extension, as many were waiting for a judge to decide whether they would receive permanent disability support. But in July, Gov. Chris Christie’s administration notified local and county welfare directors that the three-year-old extension program was over.” [, 10/10/15]

Christie Supported The Ryan Budget

Christie Praised The Ryan Budget. According to US News & World Report, “GOP Govs. Barbour, Christie, Like Paul Ryan’s Budget Plan” [US News & World Report, 4/6/11]


Carly Fiorina – An Anti-Poverty Plan Which Consisted Entirely Of “Entrepreneurship Works” And Ending “Dependence” On Welfare

Fiorina Said She Would Reach Out To The Poor Through Encouraging Entrepreneurship, And Her Anti-Poverty Plan “Revolves Around Welfare Reform” To End “Dependence”

Asked By Greta Van Susteren How She Would Reach Out To The Impoverished, Fiorina Said “Entrepreneurship Works To Lift People Up Out Of Poverty And We Are Crushing Entrepreneurship In This Country.” According to Fox News, “VAN SUSTEREN: But there are so many problems far deeper than to so many people in our population who want jobs who can’t get them. I mean somebody’s inner cities are on a really tough position. And it’s so rare that Republicans venture into the inner part of these cities and see what’s going on. I mean, how would a Carly Fiorina presidency reach out to them? FIORINA: You know, I talk a lot about entrepreneurship, Greta. One of the reasons I have to do that is because I have seen it work. I have served as chairman of Opportunity International, largest microfinance organization in the world. We have lent $8 billion, $150 at a time. Why do I bring that up? Because entrepreneurship works to lift people up out of poverty and we are crushing entrepreneurship in this country. We’re crushing it in the middle class. So we’re destroying small and family-owned businesses which provide most of the new jobs in this country and employ half the people. But we’re also discouraging entrepreneurship in these inner cities. And so it works.” [Fox News, 6/12/15]

Fiorina’s Plan “Revolves Around Welfare Reform. She Believes People Develop A Dependence On Welfare Programs That Causes Them Not To Seek Out Better Opportunities For Fear Of Losing Their Benefits.” According to the Des Moines Register, “Fiorina’s plan to close the economic opportunity gap revolves around welfare reform. She believes people develop a dependence on welfare programs that causes them not to seek out better opportunities for fear of losing their benefits. While Fiorina doesn’t want to do away with welfare programs entirely, she would like to see them radically reorganized so they work better to lift people out of poverty. Wrapped up in her opinions on income inequality is her assertion there needs to be a climate that supports entrepreneurship and helps small and family-owned business prosper, which she says will also help lift people out of poverty.” [Des Moines Register, 11/11/15]

Fiorina Claimed “Obamacare Isn’t Helping Anyone,” Which Politifact Rated Pants On Fire

Fiorina: “Obamacare Isn’t Helping Anyone” Rated Pants On Fire By Politifact. According to Politifact, “Fiorina said that ‘Obamacare isn’t helping anyone.’ Even taking the low end of estimates, tens of millions of Americans have benefited from the ACA, in big ways (such as securing insurance for the first time) or smaller ways (paying less for drugs under Medicare Part D). One does not have to buy into every aspect of the law or feel comfortable with its overall price tag to acknowledge that lots of people have benefited from it. We rate Fiorina’s statement Pants on Fire.” [Politifact, 11/11/15]


Gov. John Kasich – “Is Keeping Food Off Family Dinner Tables”

Gov. Kasich, Whose State Was Among The Worst In The Nation In Food Security, Rewrote Welfare Laws To Exacerbate The Problem

Mother Jones Headline: “How John Kasich Rewrote Welfare Laws And Is Keeping Food Off Family Dinner Tables.” [Mother Jones, 9/21/15]

Mother Jones: “A USDA Study Released Earlier This Month Ranked Ohio Among The Worst States In The Nation For Food Security. The State Has The Highest Rate Of Food Insecurity In The Midwest And The Sixth Highest Rate Nationally.”According to Mother Jones, “A USDA study released earlier this month ranked Ohio among the worst states in the nation for food security. The state has the highest rate of food insecurity in the Midwest and the sixth highest rate nationally.” [Mother Jones, 9/21/15]

Kasich’s Administration Was Using Waivers To Exceed Food Assistance Time Limits In Disproportionately White Areas And Not Using Them In Areas Populated Mostly By Minorities. According to Mother Jones, “In 1996, then-Congressman John Kasich cosponsored a welfare reform bill that, for the first time ever, put a time limit on recipients’ access to food stamps. Healthy, childless adults would be able to receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits for no more than three months in any three-year period, unless they were employed or in a training program for at least 20 hours a week. When Congress balked at a rule that would cause an estimated 1 million people to lose food aid each month, Kasich added an exception that would allow states to seek time-limit waivers for areas with especially high unemployment. Twenty years later, in his second term as Ohio’s governor, the GOP presidential hopeful is taking advantage of these waivers, as most governors have done. But Ohio civil rights groups and economic analysts say Kasich’s administration is using the waivers unequally: It applies for waivers in some regions of the state but refuses them in others, in a pattern that has disproportionately protected white communities and hurt minority populations. […]But this time, Kasich rejected the waiver for the next two years in most of the state’s 88 counties. His administration did accept them for 16 counties in 2014 and for 17 counties in 2015. Most of these were rural counties with small and predominantly white populations. Urban counties and cities, most of which had high minority populations, did not get waivers.” [Mother Jones, 9/21/15]

Kasich Supported The Ryan Budget

Kasich Praised The Ryan Budget. According to a post by John Kasich on Facebook, “When Paul Ryan served as a staffer on the House Budget Committee when I was chairman in the 90’s, I knew he was someone special. Today, as he releases his “Path to Prosperity” budget, I’m especially proud of him and what he’s accomplished. Chairman Ryan’s budget seeks to reform how government works so that it can provide better services at a better value.  This is the same idea behind The Jobs Budget here in Ohio, and I hope folks in Washington give his budget the careful consideration it deserves so we can begin reducing the deficit and creating jobs.” [John Kasich – Facebook, 4/5/11]


Gov. Mike Huckabee – Attacked The Ryan Budget… For Not GOing Far Enough

Huckabee Repeatedly Attacked Anti-Poverty Programs, Said Kids With Single Moms Would Be Starving To Death Without The Programs, Then Suggested That The Programs “Have To Be Reformed”

Huckabee Claimed That The War On Poverty Was “Never Intended To Eliminate Poverty” And Was “A Purely Political Ploy” To “Prop Up An ‘Industry Of Poverty.’” According to The Street, “America’s 50-year-old ‘War on Poverty’ was never intended to eliminate poverty, GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said Tuesday night. Instead, it was a purely political ploy. The purpose, the former Arkansas governor claimed during the first of two debates for the party’s presidential hopefuls was to prop up an ‘industry of poverty’ and provide jobs for the supposed benefactors of the poor. The event was organized by Fox Business Network and the Wall Street Journal.” [The Street, 11/10/15]

Huckabee: “Most Single Moms Are Very Poor, Under-Educated, Can’t Get A Job, And If It Weren’t For Government Assistance, Their Kids Would Be Starving To Death.” According to Politifact, “Says it’s a ‘statistical reality that most single moms are very poor, under-educated, can’t get a job, and if it weren’t for government assistance, their kids would be starving to death.’ — Mike Huckabee on Friday, March 4th, 2011 in a post on his PAC’s website.” [Politifact, 3/10/11]

Huckabee: “The Number Of Americans On Food Stamps Has Nearly Tripled… Welfare Programs Growing At That Fast A Rate Eventually Become Unsustainable… They Have To Be Reformed, But Who Will Dare Reform Them If That Many Voters Are Benefitting From Them?” According to a post by Mike Huckabee on Facebook, “The number of Americans on food stamps has nearly tripled, from 17 million to 45 million. Over the next decade, spending on food stamps alone is projected to reach $800 billion. Welfare programs growing at that fast a rate eventually become unsustainable, especially when we’re already $16 trillion in debt. They have to be reformed, but who will dare reform them if that many voters are benefiting from them?” [Mike Huckabee – Facebook, 8/13/12]

Huckabee Didn’t Support The Ryan Budget… Because It Wasn’t Extreme Enough

Politico Headline: “Huck: Ryan Budget Not Aggressive Enough.” [Politico, 4/15/11]

Published: Jan 9, 2016

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