News & Politics

Screwing Over Urban America: Why the GOP's Top Contenders Hate Cities

For the Republican contenders, urban areas are out of sight and out of mind.

The Republican presidential primary has covered significant ground. Against a backdrop of Iowan cornfields, candidates have debated socialism, capitalism, immigration and American exceptionalism, and have even touched on the finer points of Shariah law and the Federalist Papers. One thing you don’t hear about is America’s cities and the ongoing, and growing, urban crisis.

There are some oblique references, like Newt Gingrich’s suggestion that child labor laws be modified so that poor children can work as school janitors. “Really poor children in really poor neighborhoods,” mused Gingrich, “have no habits of working and have nobody around them who works … They have no habit of ‘I do this and you give me cash,’ unless it’s illegal.”

Daniel Denvir is a staff writer at Philadelphia City Paper and a contributing writer for Salon. You can follow him at Twitter @DanielDenvir.