House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) described his anti-poverty plan to MSNBC’s Chuck Todd, calling for a targeted approach to government aid, which would implement local management to tailor aid to individual needs.
“Each person has a different, unique circumstance and need, yet the federal government treats it all the same,” said Ryan. “So the vision here is, let’s customize aid to the person’s need to focus on getting them from where they are to where they want to be, which is a good job and a good career.”
Ryan’s plan would encourage each state to develop its own particular aid strategy, which would then have to be approved by the federal government in order to qualify for funding. It would also require a third party to monitor the program’s results.
Ryan said the “ideal” way for a state to target poverty would be to mimic private services like Catholic Charities.
“Maybe she needs more child care and transportation, maybe this person needs more skills training and education,” Ryan offered as hypothetical examples of targeted aid.
“If the status quo would be working, I’d be supporting it,” Ryan added. “It’s not. We have the highest poverty rates in a generation, yet we’re spending unprecedented dollars on these programs. So let’s take those dollars and spend it more effectively to actually focus on results, outcomes, getting people actually out of poverty and customizing benefit to each person’s particular needs.”