NCR Today: Are things as bad as so many voters believe? Can we tone down some of the anger and anxiety and work toward solutions to the many remaining challenges?
NCR Today: Oh yes, I watched the State of the Union address on Jan. 12. Given that I am a certifiable political nerd, I simply would not have missed it!
As the United States prepares to celebrate Thanksgiving — a holiday that American legend traces back to a dinner between Native Americans and bedraggled, immigrant pilgrims — some of the country’s top political leaders are calling to block the arrival of Syrian refugees, would-be immigrants fleeing chaos and possible death in the Middle East, a situation some think the U.S. helped create.
Updated: Catholics groups view decision as long overdue and affirmation of the power of grassroots organizing on behalf of creation and its inhabitants.
Catholic advocates are pressing Congress to make the needs of poor and vulnerable people a priority as legislators hammer out a federal spending plan for 2016.
The advocates told Catholic News Service they want to prevent trillions of dollars in social services spending from disappearing over the next decade as Congress seeks to balance the federal budget and reduce the nation's growing debt.
Their actions unfolded in recent weeks as they learned of Republican plans to remake the way social services such as Medicaid and food stamps are funded.
Perhaps the most vocal anti-government deficit hawk in recent memory, Catholic U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, the Republican Party's budget guru, introduced new bills that would at almost $100 billion to the federal deficit over 10 years.
Jonathan Chait unpacks another incredible claim made by Catholic Republican Paul Ryan that "the Obamanomics that we're practicing now have exacerbated inequality."
Food stamps feed one in five children in the United States, and the Republicans, led by Catholic Republican Congressman and former vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan, his former presidential running mate, Mitt Romney, and Catholic Republican House Speaker John Boehner want to decimate the food stamps program with immoral and inhumane budget cuts. Time will tell if Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, Rick Santorum and Marco Rubio support such hard-hearted class warfare policies.
What does Republican control of the country's purse strings mean for the game plan of those seeking social justice?
The $1.1 trillion federal spending bill approved by Congress avoided a repeat of last year's government shutdown and largely kept in place social services spending, especially programs benefiting low-income families.
Beyond the current fiscal year that ends Sept. 30, the future is less certain, however, as Republican victories in the November elections gave the party control of both chambers on Capitol Hill. With the new leaders come new plans on limiting federal spending and reducing the country's $17.6-trillion debt.