Tuesday, May 13, 2008


John Edwards seems to be doing what too few prominent losing candidates do: take their hard earned constituency and turn it into a movement.

Former Presidential candidate Senator John Edwards announced that he will serve as national chair of Half in Ten: From Poverty to Prosperity, a new campaign to cut poverty by 50% over the next ten years. This campaign brings together four organizations with the experience, knowledge, and resources to make this goal a reality: ACORN, the Center for American Progress Action Fund, the Coalition on Human Needs, and the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights.

Speaking before a crowd of activists at North Philadelphia's Thankful Baptist Church, Edwards called on Congress, the Presidential candidates, and all Americans to make the fight against poverty a priority. "The challenge before us is to make it so that hard work is enough to get ahead again. That is not just a question of helping our brothers and sisters who are living in poverty - it is a question of restoring the fundamental fairness that this country was founded upon," said Senator Edwards. . . .

The multi-year campaign will elevate focus on the issues facing the poor and middle class in America, building an effective constituency to advocate for specific policy changes..

The first years of the campaign will focus on:

- Expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit;

- Raising both state and federal minimum wages;

- Increasing the number of low-income families receiving child care assistance;

- Increasing eligibility for unemployment insurance

According to modeling by the Urban Institute, the expanded tax credits, minimum wage increases, and child care assistance alone would cut poverty by a full 26%.


At May 14, 2008 12:23 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Three and a half years too late.
One ponders as to how the dynamics of this farcical primary might have been different had Edwards chosen to do this in November of 2004 instead of electing to go to work for Wall Street.
Then again, maybe this move will work out for him after all. The extraordinary advantage the Democrats may have exploited is evaporating. They were not capable of leveraging the advantage of the '06 victories. The present candidates and their inept campaign seems to be proving equally disappointing to most those paying any kind of real attention. Right now it's a good bet the Dems are set to lose. Should all play out as it appears to be shaping up, and, if he can made the right kind of moves, Edwards may well be the nominee in 2012.
Oh yeah, it might also be a good idea to ditch the 32 million dollar estate, but...

At May 14, 2008 7:22 AM, Blogger Elderlady said...

I didn't see anything on the list about improving the quality of public education.

Unless, and until, we in this country, recognize that "ignornace" costs more than "education", Mr. Edwards is doomed to fail. We must give people the necessary skills to get good paying jobs. We cannot assure they have decent housing, in decent neighborhoods, if they don't make enough to pay the mortgage. Our schools are failing our kids, and we are failing our schools.

At May 14, 2008 11:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Though not appearing on this particular list, Edwards' advocacy for education and affordable access to higher education have been prominent features of his campaigns in both '04 and '08.

At May 21, 2008 3:42 AM, Blogger robert beal said...

Poverty isn't a economic classification, it is a social disease. The root cause is structural: literal isolation of the underclass.

Edwards project wants to throw nickles and dimes.

Edwards (Obama, Clinton, etc., ad nauseum) has no interest in anything but business as usual.

Heaven forbid he would propose that his Wall Street tycoon peers put trillions of their wealth to work in rural and urban ghettos.


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