Tag Archives: wall street journal

Robert Woodson In WSJ Defends Kemp-Ryan

Robert Woodson has an editorial in the Wall Street Journal today, a rebuttal to recent attacks by Ann Coulter on Jack Kemp and Paul Ryan.

Coulter-Sharpton vs. Kemp-Ryan

What racial provocateurs of the right and left don’t understand about how to fight poverty.

Excerpt:

Kemp went on to generate more than $52 million in private and public support, which let resident-managed properties be renovated as a precondition for their sale to residents. One of the resident-group leaders, Bertha Gilkey of the Cochran Gardens development in St. Louis, tallied the achievements made possible by Kemp’s efforts in remarks a few months after his death at the inauguration of the Jack Kemp Foundation on Oct. 21, 2009:

“We took failed businesses, turned them around. We took people off welfare in large numbers and put them to work. We took gang members out of gangs and made them husbands and fathers and responsible citizens who now are giving back to the communities not taking away from them.”

In his last days, Kemp arose from his sick bed to attend a meeting of the board of directors of Howard University, for which he had helped raise funds.

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Letter to the Editor in the Wall Street Journal

Jack Kemp Was a Humble Candidate and Humble Man

I asked Mr. Roberts why Kemp would have such pictures in his office. He replied: “Jack says it keeps him humble.”

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David Smick Reviews ‘Jack Kemp’ Book For WSJ

David Smick is out with the first major book review of the new book about Jack Kemp. Take a look at his review in tomorrow’s Wall Street Journal, it’s online tonight.

The Supply-Sider-in-Chief

Kemp detested Nixon’s ‘Southern Strategy,’ which he defined as ‘not even asking blacks to vote for you for fear of losing white voters.’

Excerpt of review:

There is a renewed interest in Kemp today. Having alienated minority voters, the GOP is flirting with a presidential lockout if it can’t appeal to the working class. Yet during the two recent GOP primary debates, there was almost no mention that economic mobility has collapsed, that a majority of the country is living little more than paycheck to paycheck, or that the stock-market gains from the Federal Reserve’s zero-interest rate policy have gone largely to the top 1%. Kemp would have pounced on these issues, and he would have tried to develop a capital ownership plan to let everyone ride the financial wave.

Kemp believed in a working man’s capitalism of robust entrepreneurship that cut across ethnic lines. He thought Republicans had a responsibility to address inner-city despair, and in the early 1980s he championed urban-enterprise-zone legislation (tax incentives to encourage inner-city business startups). “Like the Good Shepherd, America must reach out to the weak and to those who have been left behind,” Kemp said when announcing his 1988 presidential run.

Read the entire review here.

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Editorial: The Jack Kemp Model for Republicans

Mort Kondracke and Fred Barnes are in the Wall Street Journal tomorrow, but online tonight. They write about their new book on Jack Kemp.

The Jack Kemp Model for Republicans

GOP candidates in 2016 would do well to echo his message of growth, prosperity and hope.

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Comparing the Kasich Approach to the Kemp-Ryan Approach

Kimberley Strassel has an editorial about Governor John Kasich in the Wall Street Journal today.  She is discussing the Governor Kasich approach to government, and the approach that Jack Kemp and Paul Ryan would pursue. Take a look:

The Compassion of John Kasich

Big government conservatism isn’t big-hearted, despite the sermons from a few presidential hopefuls.

Strassel writes:

Of course, there is another approach to compassion. It’s the version made popular byJack Kemp, and embraced by House Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan—and a growing list of converts. It holds that there is nothing whatsoever compassionate about consigning low-income Americans to a government health-care system that delivers second-class outcomes. There’s nothing compassionate about making today’s working poor pay into a bleeding Social Security system or finance middle-class tax perks. There’s nothing compassionate about propping up a federally run poverty industrial-complex that spends most of its money on itself.

The Kemp-Ryan view knows that government is the problem, not the answer—not in any form. The answer is to devolve the money and power back to states and communities, where it can do the most good for the people who most need it. As a governor, Mr. Kasich ought to understand this argument better than most—especially given any number of smart state-level reforms he’s done to help underserved communities in Ohio.

Mr. Kasich has a mostly impressive conservative record. He has political skills. He has energy and optimism. Imagine if he were to apply all that to a Kemp-Ryan approach, to spreading the gospel of smaller government, in the name of helping those most vulnerable. He’d be a force to reckon with.

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Strassel: Bring Back the Jack Kemp GOP

Kim Strassel’s piece in the Wall Street Journal today is really good. Enjoy!

Bring Back the Jack Kemp GOP

Republican presidential candidates should embrace the anti-poverty initiatives championed by Kemp and Bob Woodson.

Some 30 years ago, an influential congressman named Jack Kemp gave a call to Bob Woodson, and in doing so became a Republican model for empowerment politics and minority outreach. A high-profile group of conservatives is staging a revival, looking to finally engage the modern left on the politics of the poor. Republican presidential candidates, pay attention.

As Hillary Clinton was rolling out her economic plan Monday—bashing Republicans as callous to the plight of struggling Americans—influential conservatives were taking to their own stage to respond. They know Democrats will make inequality a driving theme of the 2016 race, accusing the GOP of wanting to slash government funding for the needy, of driving policies that hurt the poor.

What they billed as an “anti-poverty summit” in Washington on Monday was a road map. Up on stage, three decades later, was none other than Mr. Woodson, a titan in conservatism on poverty issues. A veteran of the civil-rights fight, Mr. Woodson became disenchanted with the left’s devotion to failed government poverty programs. He started the Center for Neighborhood Enterprise, which transforms low-income areas from the inside out.

The philosophy is that low-income individuals and neighborhood organizations must play the central role in fixing their communities, and that these efforts benefit from free-market concepts like competition, entrepreneurship, efficiency and metrics. His first federal partner was Kemp, who embraced and evangelized the Woodson approach starting in the 1980s, using it to pass smart reforms, to champion innovations like “enterprise zones,” and to give his party a model for inspirational, anti-poverty politics. (A model his party quickly forgot.)

Joining Mr. Woodson on stage was (who else?) House Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan, a Kemp protégé who a few years ago became awed by CNE’s remarkable track record. The Wisconsin Republican worked the method into a new policy agenda, including his proposal last year to combine and transform federal poverty programs into “opportunity grants” that go to the states, and allow local administrators to get money to groups that actually work.

The message has meanwhile found a broader voice in a new conservative news site, Opportunity Lives, run by John Hart, a former staffer to retired Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn. Its mission is to cover and hail conservative solutions, and it has already produced a high-quality, seven-part documentary called “Comeback” that features inspiring real-life stories out of the Woodson model. More than a half-million people have watched it.

Monday’s event featured all these players, as well as a celebrities such as NFL Hall of Famer Deion Sanders, opinion-makers like National Affairs editor Yuval Levin, and scholars like the Manhattan Institute’s Fred Siegel. It follows a mid-June event at which House Speaker John Boehner offered a private screening of “Comeback,” attended by more than a dozen influential Republican leaders and members. Politicians nationally have requested briefings, and the concept is working its way into political discourse across the country.

The attraction is first and foremost great policy. Federal poverty programs fail because they are one-size-fits-all bureaucracies that keep recipients in dependency. As Mr. Woodson told me in an interview this week, this is because the left has created a poverty-industrial complex, in which most federal dollars go to “those providing the services—the social workers, the drug counselors. That entire structure is hostile to helping the poor, because these folks have their own financial interest.” The Woodson approach works because it is local, tailored, volunteer-oriented and gets money to the needy.

The Woodson approach will also resonate with most Americans, who live and serve in local communities, and understand the power of that over government handouts. It’s also a rebuttal to Democrats like Mrs. Clinton who claim Republicans don’t care. For the Jeb Bushes and Marco Rubios, orienting their campaigns around opportunity, this deserves central billing.

It’s even an inroad to minority voters, though Mr. Woodson warns that Republicans need to go beyond rhetoric. “I keep telling Republicans: Stop assuming the only way to appeal to blacks is through the race door. The untapped opportunity is the broken policies in these urban centers that are strangling the poor. Roll up your sleeves, go into your districts, meet the legitimate leaders, minister to their needs. Recruit the businesses that fund your campaigns to help. Democrats inherited these votes; Republicans have to earn them.”

Mr. Woodson points to politicians like Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who drove reform making it easier for post-prison offenders to get their occupational licenses—and thus a job—and who won 25% of the black vote when re-elected in 2014.

The Kemp drive was influential in the GOP 1990s embrace of welfare reform, and the pity is the party retreated from that space. The 2016 race is a chance to re-embrace it, and give Mrs. Clinton a run for her own rhetoric.

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Governor John Kasich Gets Kempian

Today’s Wall Street Journal has an interesting article about the work Governor John Kasich is doing in Ohio. This is how the article concludes:

Driving back to Ohio last month from a Cape Cod vacation with his family, Mr. Kasich stopped to eat in Buffalo, N.Y. He asked a few people at random if they had ever met Jack Kemp, the late Buffalo Bills quarterback who became a congressman and 1996 vice-presidential nominee.

Mr. Kemp, who once described himself as a “bleeding-heart conservative,” built a reputation as a Republican who focused on urban minorities and the poor.

“It was Jack, over and over again, who talked about lifting people, about hopes and dreams,” Mr. Kasich said. “Jack had a profound impact on the conservative moment. Maybe I have a chance to do that, too.”

Now that you’ve seen the end of the article, go back and read the entire article.

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