Josh Marshall has an interesting post today on asset-building. He is praising Harold Ford, Jr. (D-TN-9) for his work on an asset-building effort called the “ASPIRE ACT.”
I just wanted to add mention of my colleagues Ray Boshara and Reid Cramer at the New America Foundation who were the policy entrepreneurs who actually launched this policy effort and got Representatives Ford, Patrick Kennedy (D-RI-1), Thomas Petri (R-WI-6), and Phil English (R-PA-3) as well as Senators Rick Santorum (R-PA) and John Corzine (D-NJ) to support this savings accounts for kids proposal (started with an initial kick-in from the government of $500).
Tony Blair’s team at No. 10 in London were so entranced with Ray Boshara’s proposal that the U.K. became the first nation to apply his asset-building concept in the form of “Baby Bonds.”
I think Ray’s proposal is modest in scope but begins to focus attention on the asset disparities at birth in this country. And in this time of heated partisanship, it is laudable that Ray and his team have secured support on both sides of the aisle — even from Rick Santorum, even him.
In any case, check out Ray Boshara’s “Asset Building” home page. There are some very interesting proposals here.
— Steve Clemons