House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan will announce Thursday a new plan that would consolidate existing anti-poverty programs and extend more flexibility to states to allocate funds for lower-income Americans, The Washington Post
The proposal is designed to help rebrand the GOP to appeal to lower-income and working class voters, while sidestepping the traditional partisan battles of the past.
The former 2012 vice presidential nominee will announce support for an expansion of a tax credit for the working poor and a number of measures targeting education and criminal justice programs, as well as food stamps and housing aid. Medicare, however, would remain under federal jurisdiction.
The policy package will be launched through a pilot program in which the federal government consolidates existing safety-net programs into one grant given to the states called the "Opportunity Grant," the Post reported.
"It is important to note that this is not a budget-cutting exercise—this is a reform proposal," said a document setting out the plans, according to the Post.
Ryan will also set out other ideas such as giving states more flexibility in executing federal education and job training programs as well as proposals to help low-risk, non-violent offenders to avoid further jail time.
Ryan's plans are the culmination of a year's work to offer conservative policy proposals that would at the same time reduce perceptions that the Republican Party does not prioritize lower-income people.
The Post noted the plans were striking because, until now, Ryan has avoided giving specific policy proposals and has also tended to focus instead on spending cuts and paying down the debt.
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