ICYMI: National Review: Senator Tim Scott: Putting a Face on Poverty
Charleston, SC – U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC), along with a group of his conservative colleagues, recently launched the Senate Opportunity Coalition – a new initiative aiming to ensure every family across our nation has access to the American Dream. The National Review highlighted the Senate Opportunity Coalitionand their effort to find conservative solutions to the issue of opportunity, by spending time with their constituents and sharing firsthand experiences.
Senator Tim Scott: Putting a Face on Poverty
Oct. 24, 2016
Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina recruited his fellow senators to join his Senate Opportunity Coalition when he realized that a number of them were focused on similar anti-poverty efforts in their home states. “They all have passion for people in vulnerable situations,” Scott says to National Review. “Some, if not all, of them were already working on issues to deal with the most vulnerable.”
Each of these seven senators brings a unique perspective to solving poverty at the local level, shaped by their experience and the specific poverty issues that afflict their constituents.
“We wanted to focus our attention with a specific group of senators from diverse backgrounds, diverse states who each bring something to the table on the issue of opportunity,” Scott added.
Rather than building a vast legislative agenda, these young senators plan to spend – and already have spent – a great deal of time traveling across their respective states, listening to their constituents, and learning more about the unique problems they face. With that information, the coalition will identify the barriers to climbing out of poverty and try to develop legislative solutions. It was very important to Scott that each senator understand the method he had in mind: begin not with a legislative agenda but rather by listening before acting, learning from individual communities by being accessible to constituents.
This new coalition of optimistic young senators believes those projects can take shape with Republican initiative – but only if legislators sincerely listen to their constituents and develop solutions using the conservative principles of limited government and free enterprise, coupled with compassion.
In a recent coalition meeting, Scott stressed that solutions must come from the heart. “You’re not listening to people who have a legislative agenda to solve a problem,” he said. “You’re listening to people who have a heart, to present solutions to problems that have been systemic. . . . The solution is having people who love people go to where they are and have a conversation.”
“We’re shattering this misperception that somehow Republicans do not connect our hearts and our heads. It’s just hogwash,” Scott adds. “We’re talking about folks who have a heart for people, and for us to close the gap, people have to know that there is opportunity available. And one of the ways for them to know that is to show up.”