Fifty years ago this week, President Lyndon Johnson declared a national War on Poverty in his State of the Union Address. Speaking to a joint session of Congress just six weeks after President Kennedy’s assassination, he promised to “strike at the causes, not just the consequence” of persistent poverty in America and “strike away the barriers to full participation in our society.”
When Congress closes its doors this week for the Easter recess, Senators and Representatives will return to their constituents "armed with excuses" that explain away the latest fiscal fiasco. For some in Congress, cutting $85 billion (14 percent) from discretionary programs largely aimed at helping those in need is simply necessary medecine. For others, sequestration should have been avoided, but now that it has come it's time to just move on. Still others maintain the cuts were overdue. And all agree the other side is to blame.
Much has been said by politicians and the press in this campaign. In three presidential debates alone, we've heard the two contenders for our nation's highest office speak of tax cuts, deficits, jobs, and the middle class literally hundreds of times.