Reid James Ribble is the 57-year-old congressional representative of the eighth congressional district of the State of Wisconsin, a district with a number of wineries, monasteries and convents with a fire-breathing, Bible-clutching Baptist-leaning congressman representing it. This situation apparently occurred in the teabagger madness of 2010 when all sorts of persons were allowed to enter our hallowed halls of governance.
Recently Ribble came to national attentions during a House Budget Committee hearing :
... Sister Simone Campbell, a Catholic nun and executive director of NETWORK, a Catholic social justice lobby, testified to lawmakers about the effectiveness of government subsidized welfare programs and public-private partnerships with faith-based charities. Campbell highlighted the foundational nature of charity and economic justice to the Catholic Church and heralded the difference that federal assistance programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps), the Earned Income Tax Credit, and Head Start initiatives have made in the lives of America’s most vulnerable.
But not everyone at the hearing was happy with Campbell’s faith-based support for federal programs that help the poor. Instead of focusing on how the government can assist the millions of Americans who struggle to put food on the table, Rep. Reid Ribble (R-WI) indicted Campbell and the Catholic Church for not doing enough to fix poverty on their own, asking, “What is the church doing wrong that they have to come to the government to get so much help?”
Congressman Ribble is a brave man, hailing as he does from Wisconsin's eighth CD which includes Green Bay, Appleton and Door County, home of Door Peninsula Winery, a purveyor of a fine assortment of cherry and apple wines harvested from local orchards.
Normally I would refrain from plugging anything of this sort but I have fond memories of some very nice cherry wines, both sweet and dry, from the region from long ago associations with the U. of Wisconsin.
The eighth district is rife with nunneries, monasteries and Catholic colleges -- Carmelites, Sisters of St. Francis, St. Joseph, St. Clare and St. Dominic, not to mention the Community of Our Lady, and St. Norbert's College in De Pere.
What the devil were the sisters and the brothers and the assorted clergy thinking of, when they voted for Reid Ribble?
And, I'll bet that Ribble is a desert-dry Baptist who has never savored a cherry wine out of Door County.