As we have admitted in the past, we often find Congressman Paul Ryan confusing and frustrating. There’s the Ryan who seems comfortable being the poster boy for ultra-conservative, anti-government ideology, and then there’s the Ryan who seems genuinely concerned about all people’s lives in this country and who has a desire to work collaboratively to make things better.
That second Ryan showed up again last week with a plan to address poverty in this country, and while we have real concerns about parts of the plan we do believe it comes more from Ryan’s heart than his political ambitions.
The combination of block grant style program mergers and expanded tax credits seem a thoughtful response to the year Ryan has spent visiting poor urban communities in the U.S., and it’s a blend of both Republican and Democratic thinking.
We’re worried about turning the effort over to the states because we frankly don’t trust the Republican majority in Wisconsin to use the money the way we think Ryan intends for it to be used. But we give credit to Ryan for a bipartisan plan that feels to us compassionate. Perhaps his colleagues might be moved by the effort.