SALT Conference

Paul Ryan stakes position in war on poverty

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Rep. Paul Ryan, known largely as debt and deficit reformer, is expanding his focus to poverty fighter, telling a crowd Friday that government has done an inadequate job helping poor people.

The Wisconsin Republican and 2012 vice presidential nominee encouraged a crowd of hedge fund executives to join forces with the public sector to eradicate a problem he said has gotten markedly worse over the past few years.

"One of the inadvertent casualties in the war on poverty is that we've reinforced the idea that government is going to fix this," Ryan said at SkyBridge Capital's SALT 2014 conference in Las Vegas. "That's just not going to cut it anymore. Each and every one of us in America has a very important role to play."

To help his efforts at awareness, Ryan has enlisted Robert Woodson, the head of the Center for Neighborhood Enterprise.

Together, they are preaching the values of self-responsibility and the importance of making work more lucrative and attractive than public assistance.