Today’s Washington Post confirms rumors that the meek will not come into their inheritance any time soon.
“Poverty forced its way to the top of President Bush’s agenda in the confusing days after Hurricane Katrina battered the Gulf Coast and flooded New Orleans. Confronted with one of the most pressing political crises of his presidency, Bush, who in the past had faced withering criticism for speaking little about the poor, said the nation has a solemn duty to help them.
‘All of us saw on television, there’s . . . some deep, persistent poverty in this region,’ he said in a prime-time speech from New Orleans’s Jackson Square, 17 days after the Aug. 29 hurricane. ‘That poverty has roots in a history of racial discrimination, which cut off generations from the opportunity of America. We have a duty to confront this poverty with bold action.’
As it happened, poverty’s turn in the presidential limelight was brief. Bush has talked little about the issue since the immediate crisis passed, while pursuing policies that his liberal critics say will hurt the poor. He has publicly mentioned domestic poverty six times since giving back-to-back speeches on the issue in September. Domestic poverty did not come up in his State of the Union address in January, and his most recent budget included no new initiatives directed at the poor.
Read the story.