Louisiana State Rep. John LaBruzzo (R) recently stirred controversy by advocating a form of eugenics to decrease the number of poor. “I realized that all these people were in Louisiana’s care and what a massive financial responsibility that is to the state,” he said. “I said, ‘I wonder if it might be a good idea to pay some of these people to get sterilized.'” His plan would also give tax incentives to the rich to encourage procreation.
Appearing on CNN today, LaBruzzo defended his proposal by arguing that “the taxpayers of America are kind of getting fed up” with supporting welfare programs. He cited the “totally reliant” residents who relied on government evacuations during Hurricane Katrina. When CNN’s Kyra Phillips asked why he couldn’t invest in education and poverty-reduction programs, LaBruzzo faulted the media for focusing too much attention on his eugenics program:
Every one of the ideas you brought up were talked about in the brainstorming session. Obviously the media thought this was the one they could get some ratings out of. We talked about getting involved in the community. … We talked about a lot of those issues. This is one that the media grabbed hold of because it gets ratings.
He also blamed the “tremendous influx of illegal aliens” for “bringing down the economy even more.” Watch it:
But this week, LaBruzzo explicitly ruled out more common sense solutions. “LaBruzzo said other, mainstream strategies for attacking poverty, such as education reforms and programs informing people about family planning issues, have repeatedly failed to solve the problem,” the Times-Picayune reported.
LaBruzzo seems to be dead serious about implementing the plan. He “gathering statistics” now and is planning to introduce legislation “if he finds that the number of people on welfare has increased” over the past decades.