Senator DeSaulnier, EPIC Caucus Mark 50th Anniversary of War on Poverty

January 8, 2014 11:12 am · 42 comments

Senator Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord) issued the following statement marking the 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty.

“Fifty years ago, President Johnson declared a war on poverty to tackle the endemic causes of economic inequality in our country. As we continue our economic recovery, we must renew the mission to end poverty. For millions of Californians there is still no way into the middle class. We have an opportunity to ensure that the California dream is an opportunity for all, and not just for a select few.”

Recently, Senator DeSaulnier formed the Ending Poverty and Inequality in California (EPIC) Caucus. The mission of the EPIC Caucus is to reduce the number of people living in poverty and to increase economic opportunity for all Californians. The bicameral, bipartisan caucus aims to institutionalize legislative efforts to address inequality and poverty in a data-driven manner.

Assemblymember Mark Stone (D-Monterey Bay) has been named the co-chair of the EPIC Caucus.

“I’m pleased to have been named co-chair of the caucus,” Stone said. “The causes of poverty are numerous and complex, and an overwhelming number of Californians continue to face countless barriers to exiting poverty and establishing better futures for themselves and their families. With this effort we hope to take a comprehensive approach to solving this multifaceted problem that affects so many of the state’s residents.”

Senators Jim Beall, Ellen Corbett, Noreen Evans, Loni Hancock, Carol Liu, Bill Monning, Holly Mitchell, Alex Padilla, Lois Wolk, and Roderick D. Wright have joined the EPIC Caucus. Assemblymembers Luis Alejo, Toni Atkins, Susan Bonilla, Steven Bradford, Rocky Chávez, Wesley Chesbro, Lorena Gonzalez, and Adam Gray have also signed onto the caucus.

Oh boy!!! January 8, 2014 at 11:23 AM

That’s gonna cost a lot of money for almost no results.

America lost the war on poverty by putting half the country on welfare. America lost the war on drugs, America has lost all its recent wars.

The current war on jobs and growth is doing very well though.

mike January 8, 2014 at 11:23 AM

The best way to reduce inequality and grow the middle class is to create jobs in a rip-roaring economy. Unfortunately the Obama administration’s policies have only been successful in smothering economic growth.

Shelly January 8, 2014 at 11:26 AM

I can hardly wait.

RANDOM TASK January 8, 2014 at 11:32 AM

#1 YES ty for putting it right between the eyes …..dems love poverty they can secure more votes with that broken promise more than any and to even further smack us he uses our money to secure those votes by grandstanding these so called panels and caucuses reports …special investigations that lead to nothing but fringe info and a lot of wated money and time ………yet the lemmings will follow as they have for 50 years and further send this once grand state into foreclosure …….keep voting inn the lazy criminals and Demifornia will at least be in the annuls of history as ways not to do it right …….golf clap to the criminals who pander to the ones they put in the poverty level as well as the illegals who get free rides as actual citizens starve and are forced to go through the merry-go-round the dems call reform ….lol

DEY TOOK AR JERBS!!!! January 8, 2014 at 11:49 AM

Poverty still exists. Government can only make it worse. GET RID OF GOVERNMENT, GET RID OF POVERTY!!!!

unknown January 8, 2014 at 11:50 AM

We lost.

Fritzhugh Ludlow January 8, 2014 at 12:07 PM

EPIC???….Hardly original, In 1934 the Socialist Writer Upton Sinclair ran for Governor on the “End Poverty in California” or EPIC Platform. He got over a Third of the popular vote. See the book “I Governor of California and How I Ended Poverty: A True Story of the Future”…1934.

carolputman January 8, 2014 at 12:08 PM

With cuts to the federal
food stamp program, the
current administration
hopes to end the problems
of the poor once and for all
by simply starving them to

Stead January 8, 2014 at 12:14 PM

Nothing new here. It’s been covered already.

Noj January 8, 2014 at 12:19 PM

Tens of billions of dollars wasted by Democrats since LBJ. Total waste.

vindex January 8, 2014 at 12:20 PM

How’s that war working out? 50 years later.. more poverty than ever.

Boneguy1 January 8, 2014 at 12:21 PM

Great Mark – I will be standing right behind you when you give up your lavish pension, benefits, Committee honorariums, lobbyist gifts and perks, your sweetheart developer deals etc. in other words all your stuff that you have scammed from the taxpayer and the poor over the years.

Equality this #)(*&#&(!!!!! 🙁

concord grape January 8, 2014 at 12:39 PM

and how much is this “caucus” going to cost the taxpayers? How about big business stop outsourcing jobs. Oh, thats right, they rather pay someone 35 cents an hour rather than minimum wage. Besides, who wants to talk with someone you can understand.

Bob the Repairman January 8, 2014 at 12:59 PM

After 50 years, I’m glad there is no poverty!! In order to get people back to work, the government must get out of the way, reduce taxes and regulations that hamper businesses. Common sense, if businesses can hire more people that would provide paychecks to workers, they will pay taxes. Not really a complicated problem. The liberal mind thinking is to have the government take care of everyone there by have complete control over their lives.

Captain Bebops January 8, 2014 at 1:05 PM

“How’s that war working out? 50 years later.. more poverty than ever.”
And created by Republican policies.

Just Another Concord Resident January 8, 2014 at 1:11 PM

Let’s see, the statistics I saw this morning are pretty alarming. In the last 50 years, the “war on poverty” has cost Billions of dollars (yours and mine) and has reduced the poverty level by about 5%. In the 50 years prior to the government getting involved, the poverty level was reduced by about 20% with zero government involvement. The simple answer is, get the government out of the war on poverty. They can’t make a difference. The rest of the population needs to get furious about the huge waste of money and massive government buildup with no results. Vote the current administration out of office, cut the size of the government and fire Mark.

Swede January 8, 2014 at 1:48 PM

My family came from Sweden, a socialistic country where, 30 years ago, was a fantastic place to live. All Swedes enjoyed a pension at retirement, there was very low unemployment, and all citizens received excellent medical coverage. That all changed in the 90’s when “political refugees” from the Middle East began crossing the boarder and refused to speak the language, thereby taxing the system….they consumed resources and money, but contributed nothing to the system. The economic stratification that followed can be directly attributed to the fact that without a balanced system in which citizens equally contribute and draw on resources, it will collapse. What I see is California is doing the exact opposite, we are trying to fix a broken system in reverse, and with silly things like EPIC which will only waste the taxpayer’s money (here’s a thought….how about you subsidize the caucus with the politician’s pay, let’s see how quickly this silly caucus is stopped in it’s tracks!), politicians are doing a great job of increasing the gap between the rich and poor.

Poor choices, made by politicians who are self-serving, and doing ridiculous caucus’ that will yield nothing other than a statistic for the history books but no real world solutions. Sickens me to think this is what I pay taxes towards….

bob January 8, 2014 at 1:51 PM

It took the Russians 70 years to realize that Marxism had failed them. LBJ only declared war on poverty to placate the poor so he could continue his Vietnam adventure on their backs. Want to put people to work? Build the Keystone pipeline and watch the work cure the problem. Even Jesus knew that the poor would always be with us. BTW, from 1970 to 2012 we have spent $2.4 TRILLION!!!

anonymous January 8, 2014 at 2:13 PM

Last week Senator Caulderon, which is about to be indicted for a $90,000 bribe,returned to the state Senate. He was ignored by most Senators. One came and gave him a big man hug.

Guess who that was?

Did you guess DeSaulnier? If so, you guessed right.

The Professor January 8, 2014 at 2:25 PM

I just love the b.s. rhetoric in the first paragraph. No way to the middle class? The Dem answer is to tax the wealthy until the fall DOWN into the middle class. Ensure the Cali dream for all? How about ensure the Cali dream for all who are willing to bust their asses.

“War on Poverty” is just lefty language that means “Take $ and resources out of your pocket and give it to someone who will vote for me.” Giving people incentive to not work or try will only prolong the problems and make them worse.

There is a reason zoos and parks have signs that say “Do not feed the animals”. It’s because when you do, they lose the ability and will to fend for themselves.

Bubba January 8, 2014 at 3:41 PM

Blow chunks!
This guy makes me SICK!

RANDOM TASK January 8, 2014 at 4:07 PM

when have the dems ever won a war………..ohhh my bad illegals entering the country used to be illegal …….but the dems see more voters so are changing laws to allow illegals to drive own homes and even fool the gov for so many years they get law degrees and get a free pass … what have we learned ……if you secretly enter the U.S. and use fake I.D. and swindle every person in the country with forged documents you too can vote dem

Antonio January 8, 2014 at 4:28 PM

The war on poverty will end the same day as the war on drugs.

The 12th of never.

ClayDen January 8, 2014 at 4:32 PM

The war on poverty is a total failure. Time to withdraw and cut our losses.

fulubulu January 8, 2014 at 5:05 PM

If the 50 year War on Poverty was effective, wouldn’t it be over by now…

To keep from being impoverished 1. Graduate high school and preferably get a college degree and 2. Don’t have children until you can afford them.

Elwood January 8, 2014 at 5:17 PM

50 years of war and poverty is still hanging in there in spite of about half the country being on some sort of government dole, paid for by my taxes.

Ray January 8, 2014 at 6:04 PM

@#10: Actually over 10 TRILLION DOLLARS spent on welfare/entitlement program give-aways since 1964!! What a scam. Johnson was one of the biggest crooks we ever had in the WH. That’s TRILLION with a T.

claycordian January 8, 2014 at 6:30 PM

So all of these government handouts have served to take the place of the father figure in all of these families. All of the single parent families have the government as the other parent. Fifty years ago, those families in the poverty level were at something like 82% two parent families. Today? More like 40%. The handout “war” isn’t working…..

Charlie January 8, 2014 at 6:46 PM

California has 12% or the US population but 1/3 of all welfare spending. Since LBJ great society we have spent trillions, not billions of dollars trying to eliminate poverty and what has been the outcome?

I think Ben Franklin had a much better understanding of this problem and this is what he said:

“I am for doing good to the poor, but…I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. I observed…that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.”
― Benjamin Franklin

Mark D. is the EPIC failure January 8, 2014 at 7:26 PM

More liberal blather from our failure of a local politician, Mark DeSaulnier. A true socialist at heart. I bet he gets re-elected by the sheeple who love to suck on the government teat.

. January 8, 2014 at 7:38 PM

And BHO is now pushing the “income inequality” issue

Guess what, middle class?

You’re screwed.

. January 8, 2014 at 9:03 PM

And mark will continue to be re-elected. He can count on the stupidity and short attention span of the voters.

ClayDen January 8, 2014 at 9:03 PM

LBJ and his war on poverty can be credited with the destruction of the two parent black family. About the time this “war” started, there were fewer than 10% of black babies being born out of wedlock, now it is about 70%. What made this possible? The government handout took the place of the father in the family and the nuclear black family was largely destroyed by (the liberal) LBJ, creating a dependent class of poor white and black families. What is the surest way to be poor? Be a single mother.

. January 8, 2014 at 9:06 PM

Yet nobody is taking responsibility. Those who should are taking the easy way out and depending on the govt for handouts.

anonymous January 8, 2014 at 10:42 PM

Dear Senator DeSaulnier,

Did you know the war on poverty has spent $21,000,000,000 ,000.

Thats enough to make 21,000,000 people millionaires. Wow! And you want to keep up the war?

. January 9, 2014 at 7:19 AM

@anonymous # 35….

Facts? You’re presenting Mark with facts?

To paraphrase someone else – he can’t handle the facts!

ranger January 9, 2014 at 7:36 AM

The California politic is too busy pandering to
the narcissistic lgbt lobby to give a rats ass that
homelessness and poverty in the state is now
effecting more of the population than ever before.

Politician come up January 9, 2014 at 9:18 AM

with this stuff just to make us think they
are actually doing something.

BGR January 9, 2014 at 5:05 PM

The U.S. has spent near 21 TRILLION on the War on Poverty since 1965; $16T since Clinton Administration. How on earth will DeSaulnier and his pals produce any other results than the economy killing government redistribution already squandered? EPIC is a money vampire even before it crawls out of its crypt.

Highway Veteran January 9, 2014 at 7:26 PM

Hopefully this caucus won’t use the current administration’s ludicrous desire to spread the wealth so everyone is on an equal playing field using productive people’s tax money and wealth to enable instead of resolving this longtime problem. This theory does not work.

There may never be a way to solve the economic gap because some people choose not to work or are incapable of working. Unless there is motivation, skill, and energy the problem perpetuates. Attitudes about work and self-reliance may improve this situation.

Government officials need to look at the damning laws that tax the very people who employ and provide jobs. Increasing taxes to pay for ridiculous projects and programs will never solve the problem either.

We need to have the ability to manufacture products again. American ingenuity has created many opportunities. Government regulations and laws prevent production and cause higher taxation. The passage of fair trade laws have been deeply affected U.S. workers because it is cheaper to make inferior produces in other countries. I prefer American made products!

Some of these self-serving politicians have screwed up the economy and in many cases citizens have lost confidence or are too busy making a living to be involved.

Anon January 10, 2014 at 6:31 AM

Are you reading any of this Mark? Thought not.

. January 10, 2014 at 8:23 AM


Of course not. I’m sure that Bonilla and DeSaulnier use the same staff – who claim they are “in perfect touch with their constituents…”

To those voters who elected DeSaulnier and Bonilla – why don’t you do your research instead of taking the easy way out and voting the party line?

Sorry – that requires thinking on your part…..

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