Backgrounder posted September 15, 2014
The War on Poverty After 50 Years
This week, the U.S. Census Bureau is scheduled to release its annual poverty report. The report will be notable because this year marks the 50th anniversary of the launch of President Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty. In his January 1964 State of the Union address, Johnson proclaimed, “This administration today, here and now, declares unconditional war on poverty in…
Issue Brief posted April 7, 2014
The “Heat and Eat” Food Stamp Loophole and the Outdated Cost Projections for Farm Programs
In February, Congress passed a new farm bill that lacked meaningful and necessary reform. Making matters worse, Congress made critical mistakes that will have a major impact on both food stamps and farm programs. The most significant attempt at food stamp reform was to close the “heat and eat” loophole, which allows states to artificially boost the amount of food stamps…
Issue Brief posted March 7, 2014
New Preschool Spending an Unnecessary Burden on American Taxpayers
President Obama has proposed spending $75 billion over the next 10 years to create a new federally funded preschool initiative. His fiscal year (FY) 2015 budget proposes spending billions to expand access to “high quality preschool” for every four-year-old child in the country. Legislative proposals in the House and Senate mirror the President’s plan.
Issue Brief posted December 4, 2013
Eight Things to Watch for in the Farm Bill
The House and Senate are working out differences between their farm bills. Since both bills are seriously flawed, any bill that the negotiators produce is also likely to have major problems. The following is a list of major questions to consider if the negotiators do come up with a farm bill.
1. Will Congress Continue to Play Politics with the Farm Bill by Combining…
Issue Brief posted October 8, 2013
A Comparison of the House and Senate Farm Bills
Congress continues to treat agriculture as if it were 1933 instead of 2013. Agriculture is a cutting-edge sector of the economy that continues to innovate and produce more food with fewer resources.
Yet, every five years when the farm bill is up for renewal, many legislators, including those who claim to be pro–free market and limited government, push a farm bill that is…
Special Report posted October 7, 2013
Common Core National Standards and Tests: Empty Promises and Increased Federal Overreach Into Education
Americans who cherish limited government must be constantly vigilant of pushes to centralize various aspects of our lives. Government intervention is a zero-sum game; every act of centralization comes at the expense of liberty and the civil society institutions upon which this country was founded.
Education is no exception. Growing federal intervention in education over…
Issue Brief posted September 12, 2013
How to Reform Food Stamps
For decades, farm bills have combined agriculture policy with the food stamps program. These farm bills would have been better deemed “food stamp bills,” as food stamps account for about 80 percent of farm bill costs.
In July, the House passed an agriculture-only farm bill. By separating agriculture programs from food stamps, the House took a good first step, but it…
Issue Brief posted June 27, 2013
Six Reforms for the House Farm Bill
On June 20, the House voted down its farm bill by a bipartisan vote of 234–195. This action was a major victory for fiscal responsibility and the American people. Now, instead of locking the country into five years of bad public policy, the House can develop a bill that provides significant reforms for both farm policy and the food stamp program. The following six…
Backgrounder posted May 15, 2013
13 Ways the 113th Congress Can Improve Education in America
There is no shortage of opportunities for Congress to reform federal education policy. Dozens of federal education programs are managed by well-intentioned yet disconnected bureaucrats in Washington, who are far removed from the needs of teachers and children in the classroom.
Taxpayers, meanwhile, must send billions of dollars every year to Washington to fund federal…
Backgrounder posted March 12, 2013
Universal Preschool’s Empty Promises
The Obama Administration wants to establish a continuum of preschool services for children from birth through age five. As part of President Barack Obama’s drive for a “cradle-to-career” government-controlled education system, in February the Administration proposed significantly increasing government spending on early childhood education and care. The President’s…