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Government and Politics

Congressman Ryan lays out Republican ticket's poverty plan at Cleveland stop
V.P. hopeful says Romney would transfer power from Washington to states for poverty programs

Kevin Niedermier
Congressman Paul Ryan talks about the Republican presidential ticket's poverty reduction plans at Cleveland State University.
Courtesy of Brian Bull WCPN
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In The Region:
G.O.P. vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan was in Cleveland Wednesday laying out his ticket’s plan to battle poverty. During a speech at Cleveland State University, Ryan said 50 years of federal anti-poverty programs have mostly created dependency, but he and Mitt Romney would change that by taking power away from Washington.                                                              
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Congressman Ryan says the success of top-down government anti-poverty programs is measured by how many dollars are spent, not on how many people are lifted out of poverty. And, he says much of the welfare reform in the 1990s, supported by a Republican Congress and Democratic President Bill Clinton, worked because states were given more control.

“A Romney-Ryan administration will restore working parts of the welfare reform law that were undone or weakened. We’ll do this for the millions of Americans who deserve to live lives of dignity and freedom. We’ll also apply other lessons from welfare reform’s success. Many of those programs came from the states, and President Clinton and Congress recognized it was a good idea to give states the power to tailor those programs to their unique needs.”

Romney would give more state’s more control of Medicaid

The Romney campaign claims the Obama administration wants to gut the work requirements of welfare reform, a claim fact-checking organizations have debunked. The administration has proposed giving states waivers if they can show they can be more effective in helping people find jobs. Ryan says Romney would extend more state control to Medicaid and food stamps.   He singled out Brian Wade in the C.S.U. auditorium crowd. Fourteen years ago Wade started a homeless shelter in Elyria funded with private donations and no government money. But Wade says he’s still been hampered by other levels of government intervention.

“When we started the building department tried to shut us down, then challenged us to rezone the property. When we went for rezoning they didn’t want to change the zoning and we spent months fighting this. There was a crack house across the street where illegal and immoral things were going on, but they never bothered them. We’re trying to help people and we have politicians on our back.”

Wade says he knows more about running a homeless shelter than the government does, and he’s happy Romney would reduce regulations.Congressman Ryan also slammed the provisions of the Affordable Care Act that require contraception be part of employer-provided health insurance.                                                                                                                             
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