The Irish American Democrats (IAD) group has launched a fierce attack on Republican VP candidate Paul Ryan saying he does not represent the Irish Catholic values that he was raised with.
The group, located in Washington, has played a major role in Democratic Party circles in recent elections and are especially close to the Clintons.
The organization points out that the AmericanCatholic bishops bitterly criticized Ryan’s budget plans when they were released and stated that the budget failed to meet the moral criteria of the church,
IAD’s chairman Stella O’Leary stated that, “The Irish owe their success in this country to the fairness and justice provided by the American system and the protection from religious discrimination provided by the Catholic Church, the Democratic Party and the Labor Movement.
Together these institutions made it possible for the Irish to overcome prejudice and rise to the top in every walk of American life. The American Government and the Catholic Church provided education, economic security and health care.
Without these protections, Paul Ryan would not be in the position he's in today, but he does not represent the values of this tradition. His budget, with more tax cuts for the wealthy, an additional $250,000 tax cut for millionaires, deep cuts in education from Head Start to college aid, and ending Medicare as we know it, by turning it into a voucher system, shows complete disregard for the needs of the middle class and the poor.
The Catholic Bishops felt compelled to send a letter to Congress saying the Ryan budget failed to meet the moral criteria of the Church, that the budget should help "the least of these, the poor, the hungry, the homeless, the jobless." Here is part of the letter the Bishops sent to Congress:
1. Every budget decision should be assessed by whether it protects or threatens human life and dignity.
2. A central moral measure of any budget proposal is how it affects the lives and dignity of “the least of these” (Matthew 25). The needs of those who are hungry and homeless, without work, or in poverty should come first.
3. Government and other institutions have a shared responsibility to promote the common good of all, especially ordinary workers and families who struggle to live in dignity in difficult economic times.
"We're people, the Irish and Americans, who never stop imagining a brighter future, even in bitter times." President Barack Obama, in Dublin, May 2011.