Arkansas Republican Stephen Meeks Slammed For Claiming ‘Being Poor In America Is A Personal Choice’

"A homeless man can go to school, get a job driving a truck making $70k per year and in 20 years become a millionaire," he wrote.

The Arkansas and US flags flying in front of the Arkansas capitol rotunda
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"A homeless man can go to school, get a job driving a truck making $70k per year and in 20 years become a millionaire," he wrote.

Arkansas Conservative Stephen Meeks is feeling the burn after telling the world that being poor is a “personal choice.” The Senior Republican Representative took to Twitter last week to remind people that anyone can be a millionaire if they “chose,” according to Raw Story, and the backlash has been ferocious.

“Being poor in America is a personal choice, unless there are mitigating circumstances,” he wrote in a tweet on November 15. “A homeless man can go to school, get a job driving a truck making $70k per year and in 20 years become a millionaire. In America, you can work hard and change your future – if you chose.”

Right away Twitter responded to the comments, slamming Meeks for being “out of touch” and criticizing his math calculations.

“Read your tweet, #StephenMeeks, then read the comments to see if anyone has pointed out the flaws in your hypothesis. Nearly all of them have. In America, you can work hard and still end up homeless thanks to a broken healthcare system & insipid, out of touch #GOP pols like you,” said one Twitter user.

“A person making $70,000 annually would have to save every penny over 20 years in order to be worth 1 million 4 hundred thousand,” pointed out another user. “That means they would have to live without food, shelter, clothing, transportation, Oh, crap, they would have to do without everything.”

Meeks deleted the tweet and blocked his account after the roasting, only to unblock his account and try again with over a dozen new tweets defending his position.

After battling back and forth with Twitter users, he re-worded his tweet and posted it again, this time with a YouTube link to back up his theory about poverty and self-made millionaires.

Unsurprisingly, Meeks’ constituents and followers weren’t satisfied with the re-worded message.

The conservative firebrand then went on to tweet about studies involving millionaires and to dispell myths about success in America. He told followers that most millionaires are “self-made” and that it is a myth that wealthy people inherit their money. He also tweeted that discipline is the key to becoming a millionaire.

He also claimed that “many” millionaires never made more than six figures a year and most came from middle-class income families or below.

Finally, after several days of defending his original tweet, Meeks sent out an apology, saying it wasn’t his intent to offend anyone but to merely point out his belief in the “American dream.”

It doesn’t look like Twitter is letting him off the hook.