Experts debate the state of poverty in America

Sep. 13, 2012 at 8:30 AM ET

TODAY invited Nicholas Eberstadt of the American Enterprise Institute and Shawn Fremstad of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in for a chat on the poverty data that was released Wednesday.

Both panelists were asked when politicians from both parties will take poverty seriously.

Eberstadt said that politicians agree in the sense that the American government does devote hundreds of millions of dollars to government programs for the poor. But he argued that they aren’t taking more meaningful steps.

“Democrats and Republicans agree rhetorically on this--but we can't seem to get the growth machine to be as inclusive as it was in the pre-globalization era,” he said.

Said Fremstad: “The real issue in my view is too few good jobs. The poverty rate is largely determined to by the state of jobs and the economy, and the extent to which economic growth is broadly shared, so we need to work on those issues.”

Here’s an archive of the chat: