Joe Kennedy in 2020

Joe Kennedy in 2020


A few years ago Speaker Paul Ryan was lit up in the press by Catholic for his obsession for cutting aid to poor people. Last week during an all night hearing a fellow Catholic lit him up.

Back in 2012, Ryan said: “Our budget offers a better path, consistent with the timeless principles of our nation’s founding and, frankly, consistent with how I understand my Catholic faith,” We put our trust in people, not in government. Our budget incorporates subsidiarity by returning power to individuals, to families, and to communities.” 

Part of “returning power” to individuals meant cutting a massive amount of help to poor people which number over 43 million Americans.  What Ryan found so consistently “Catholic” about that is anyone’s guess.

In 2012, National Catholic Reporter wrote: More than 90 Catholic theologians and scholars at the Jesuit university argued Ryan was “profoundly misreading church teaching” and distorting Catholic social doctrine to fit his political agenda. “We would be remiss in our duty to you and our students if we did not challenge your continuing misuse of Catholic teaching to defend a budget plan that decimates food programs for struggling families, radically weakens protections for the elderly and sick, and gives more tax breaks to the wealthiest few,” they wrote. “Subsidiarity is not a free pass to dismantle government programs and abandon the poor to their own devices.” His Georgetown critics also called out Ryan’s infatuation with a libertarian icon.

That would be Ayn Rand.  Below, Rep. Joe Kennedy puts it to Ryan more succinctly.

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Lauren Victoria Burke
Twitter: @LVBurke / Lauren Victoria Burke is an independent journalist who analyses politics and justice reform. She created, a blog that covers the work of African American members of Congress, in 2009. Ms. Burke has also been a staffer for the Senate Democratic Policy Committee and Director of Communications for Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN). She has had a very diverse career in politics and media and appears weekly on NewsOneNow with Roland Martin. She has also appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews, Politics Nation with Al Sharpton and Up with Steve Kornacki on MSNBC. She is also a contributing writer for and Ms. Burke was born in the Bronx, New York and grew up on Long Island. She holds a B.A. in History from The American University. E-mail: Instagram: LVB325.