Tag Archives: Rick Santorum

Mitt Romney:The Republican Suicide Pact of #2012 #tcot #tpp #tpe #teaparty #tlot

After losses, Santorum sets Penn as do-or-die | Campaign 2012 | Washington Examiner

http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/article/after-losses-santorum-sets-penn-key-test/463081?utm_source=WP%20TEMPLATE:%20Political%20Digest%20-%2004/04/2012&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Washington%20Examiner:%20Political%20Digest

….”Wisconsinites have spoken!” Rep. Paul Ryan said as he introduced primary winner Mitt Romney at a victory party in Milwaukee Tuesday night. “Republicans are unifying!”….

RRD:The polls do tend to indicate that Wisconsin Republicans are unifying,but contrary to the delusions of Ryan there are a few races that remain before we have a nominee,much less “unify” behind such a nominee.For a example of the kind of wild enthusiasm Romney invokes among Conservatives I thought I would repost the following by Judson Phillips:

A letter to the Republican Establishment – Tea Party Nation

http://www.teapartynation.com/forum/topic/show?id=3355873%3ATopic%3A1947168&xgs=1&xg_source=msg_share_topic

….” You proved you could get Mitt Romney nominated without conservatives. Of course you guys are the one’s who drove the Republican Party to the brink of political extinction in 2006 and 2008. Why should you pay attention to the Tea Party, the group that single handedly saved the Republican Party in 2010?

At this point, you need to buy a clue.

You cannot win the White House without us.

In surveys we have done, 25% of conservatives surveyed said they would not vote for Mitt Romney in the General Election. Barack Obama and the Democrats are going to set records, not only for the amount of money they raise, both legally and illegally, they are also going to set records for the number of dead people voting as well as people voting early and often. After all, it is the Chicago way.

If 25% of the Republican base is checking out, you are not going to win the White House.

So how do you get the conservatives you made a point of ignoring in the primary back into the fold?

First, someone better tell Romney to choose a conservative VP. Chris Christie isn’t a conservative.Neither is Tim Pawlenty. If you want a conservative, think Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Marco Rubio or Rand Paul.

If you give us another “moderate” or a liberal as the Vice President nominee, we will not be there. ”…..

RRD:I sympathize with Mr.Phillips,but think that he is naive if he expects Romney to care.I am also not sure what surveys he is referring to,my own ad hoc count,based on comments I’ve seen on Facebook and other sites,would be closer to 10-15% who will not vote for Romney in the general election,myself included.
Of those most will not vote for any presidential candidate and about a third are already setting up Gary Johnson 2012 signs on their lawns and placing Gary Johnson bumper stickers on their cars.I know of at least two bloggers(other than myself)who will not support Romney,and a number who will do so,but who will do so bitterly.

But back to why I believe Romney does not care:he lives in a alternate reality.

In Romneyland the way to get independent voters is to make “the conservative case for the Individual Mandate”,a position that puts him to the left of the Independent Voters he is courting.

In Romneyland Romneycare is a asset,not a liability(fn1)

In Romneyland everything that we have heard thus far,about Obamacare,Global Warming etc is simply something to be forgotten about,erased & ignored,once the general election starts.You see it’s like ”an Etch A Sketch. You can kind of shake it up and restart all over again ”.(fn2)

In Romneyland elections are not about beliefs and principles,they are about “electability”.(fn3)

It’s true that some believe that Romney will have no choice but to pick a Conservative,but that view is based on two assumptions,neither of which may be true:

1.That a conservative will accept the “honor”.

2.That Romney doesn’t take the base for granted.I believe that Romney’s view is much closer to that of the Republican strategist who once advised him;Mike Murphy.

This is Murphy’s view of both the Republican base & the Democratic base:

To go forward, GOP must snap out of its Sarah Palin spell Mike Murphy – NY Daily News

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/gop-snap-sarah-palin-spell-article-1.428766

…..”Look at the crowds she can draw, I was told. She “excites the base.”

Phooey. Every presidential election year brings forth some new nugget of conventional wisdom from the media elite that totally misses the real picture. Last year, the big wrong idea was this notion that base voters have somehow become the new swing voters. We are now told the party base – those voters who will vote for a bag of cement if it has an R or D attached to it – must be carefully appealed to, romanced and appeased.

Under that funhouse reasoning, Palin was an inspired pick.”….

And if Mr.Murphy is correct,(and this is the mindset of many of those advising Romney),if the base will vote for “a bag of cement if it has an R….attached to it” then why shouldn’t Romney follow the advice Murphy offered John Mccain:pick someone like Tom Ridge to show how “independent” you are.

Indeed,Jonah “try a little Pinochet(fn4)” Goldberg,(perhaps competing for the “most unprincipled and short-sighted conservative columnist award”) ,recently offered this gem of a column,in which he explains that Romney’s hypocrisy is irrelevant,since Obama is also a hypocrite,and that Romneycare will actually help Romney with some nano-segment of the population who mindlessly accept whatever the Today Show tells them about everything except for Obamacare and Romney:

Obamacare Will Be Romney’s Savior – Jonah Goldberg – Townhall Conservative Columnist

http://townhall.com/columnists/jonahgoldberg/2012/04/04/obamacare_will_be_romneys_savior/page/full/

….” Indeed, throughout the debate season,Santorum and others constantly insisted that Romney can’t attack Obamacare.

The funny thing is: Even as they were saying he can’t attack Obamacare, Romney was — you guessed it — attacking Obamacare. Romney has been attacking Obamacare since its inception. “I’ll stop it in its tracks on day one!” he promises constantly on the stump.

… Yes, Romney might be inconsistent to attack Obamacare, at least on the mandate, but there’s no basis in reality to say he “can’t” attack it nonetheless.

Obama opposed the mandate vociferously when running against Hillary Rodham Clinton, but that didn’t stop him from fighting to make it the law of the land.”…..

RRD:Santorum made his best statement when he said:

…..“The debate right now is fundamental and there’s one candidate in this race who can actually make the contrast that is necessary to take the Republican position, conservative position,” Santorum said outside the Supreme Court on Monday. “There is one candidate who is disqualified to make the case.”….(fn5)

And no I am not endorsing him(fn6)
But Goldberg is equivocating when he says that Romney’s critics are wrong to say that he can’t attack Obamacare,what they clearly mean is that Romney cannot make a fundamental,political-moral argument against it without being hypocritical or rejecting his previous position.
And as to the claim that Romney’s
hypocrisy is irrelevant since Obama is also a hypocrite;so the GOP should seek to emulate a hypocritical Democrat,with the main distinction that Obama will have a overwhelming advantage in having the press point out Romney’s hypocrisy while ignoring Obama’s?

Goldberg:

….”Moreover, the broader bipartisan assumption that Romney will be hurt by Romneycare in the general election is deeply flawed.

First of all, Obamacare is unpopular (a fact a lot of political coverage conveniently overlooks). That’s why Democrats don’t talk about it on the stump, and neither did Obama for a very long time — until the Supreme Court forced him to re-acquire political ownership. If the court upholds the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Obama is not going to want to remind voters of his responsibility for an unpopular piece of legislation. If the court throws it out, Obama is not going to want to remind voters that his signature accomplishment — which distracted him from a bad economy and cost the Democrats the House — was so flawed that the court had to reject it. Either way, Obama will not be racing to talk about health care. But Romney will.”

RRD:To paraphrase Goldberg ”the funny thing is: Even as Goldberg is saying Obama won’t trumpet Obamacare, Obama
is–you guessed it trumpeting Obamacare”.Indeed,if Goldberg emerged from his pragmatist cave long enough to look at the world he would see that Obama has beamed with pride when speaking of something,which he does,in fact,regard as his “signature accomplishment”,and yes he has been doing so since before the case came up before the Court.The most notable recent case was in a 60 Minutes interview in which he boasted that he had achieved more in his first two years than any President had with the ”possible exceptions” of LBJ,FDR and Lincoln.
(fn7)
Obama is neither a pragmatist nor a fool.He will not make the election a referendum on Obamacare,but he will confidently defend it.Indeed,I would not rule out the possibility that if the law is thrown out,Obama would declare his intention to pass it again!Goldberg like many who have helped give “the stupid party” its name,does not seem to grasp that while he and others are focused on “beating Obama” Obama is quite serious when he says that he would rather be a “successful” one term president,than a “unsuccessful” two-term president.While the Republicans are dutifully playing their role of inspecting a centimeter of the bark of a particular tree,the left is laying multi-decade plans for cutting down the forest.

….”It’s often said that Obama will respond to Romney’s attacks by saying the mandate was based on Romneycare. Romney will respond, “Well, you did it wrong” and promise to repeal and replace the law. ”

RRD:Did what wrong?Force people to buy health insurance the wrong way?What is the right way to destroy liberty?On a state by state level?Did Obama institute Socialized Medicine the wrong way?What is the right way?
Will Romney explain to Obama the correct,conservative way to institute socialized medicine?

“Besides, Romney will have plenty of other lines of attack: the raid on Medicare, the rationing board, the tax hikes, the religious liberty issues, the creation of a vast new entitlement when the existing ones are crushing us with debt, etc.”

RRD:So Romney will argue that Medicare should not be cut when the existing entitlement programs are crushing us with debt?He will defend ”religious liberty” & defend the state government’s right to force people to buy health insurance & the state government’s right to force Catholic Hospitals to provide the Morning After Pill?
You didn’t know about that last?

Here:

FLASHBACK: Romney Does Flip-Flop and Forces Catholic Hospitals to Distribute Morning-After-Pill | LifeSiteNews.com

http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/archive/ldn/1951/20/5120905

….”Meanwhile, the independents and moderates who dislike Obamacare, but who are not libertarians, will most likely see Romneycare as evidence that Romney is not one of the right-wing crazies the “Today” show keeps warning them about.”….

RRD:Mr.Goldberg who are these “independents and moderates who dislike Obamacare,but who are not libertarians”?I have heard of this exotic species,indeed Romney’s staff speaks of them to Politico(fn8),but I have yet to encounter them.Why do they dislike Obamacare,and is their dislike sufficient to vote for a man whom the Today Show will tell them day in and day out,is a heartless,ruthless,sociopath,who destroyed jobs for profit at Bain Capital,and who wants to kill them and drag them into a unneccessary war with Iran,while the children of the poor die from lack of health care?
I would submit to Mr.Goldberg that one cannot simultaneously be the kind of person who forms their opinions based on what the Today Show tells them,& yet oppose Obamacare & vote for Romney.
“This will kill that”
What’s more,given the reality(which does not seem to have sunk in with ideological con men like Goldberg and Fehrnstrom),that a politicians statements live on forever,and that the only issue is whether they will get wide coverage,they are just as likely to beleive that Romney is a deceitful hypocrite.

I will conclude by noting that many decades ago,Ayn Rand correctly identified many of the problems in the Conservative Movement in a article entitled “Conservatism:A Obituary”:

“Conservatives” — Ayn Rand Lexicon

http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/conservatives.html

…..”If the “conservatives” do not stand for capitalism, they stand for and are nothing; they have no goal, no direction, no political principles, no social ideals, no intellectual values, no leadership to offer anyone.

Yet capitalism is what the “conservatives” dare not advocate or defend. They are paralyzed by the profound conflict between capitalism and the moral code which dominates our culture: the morality of altruism . . . Capitalism and altruism are incompatible”….

…..”What is the moral stature of those who are afraid to proclaim that they are the champions of freedom? What is the integrity of those who outdo their enemies in smearing, misrepresenting, spitting at, and apologizing for their own ideal? What is the rationality of those who expect to trick people into freedom, cheat them into justice, fool them into progress, con them into preserving their rights, and, while indoctrinating them with statism, put one over on them and let them wake up in a perfect capitalist society some morning?

These are the “conservatives”—or most of their intellectual spokesmen”…..

Footnotes:

fn1

Mitt Romney or not, GOP is coming for ‘Obamacare’ – Alexander Burns – POLITICO.com

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0312/74629_Page2.html

…..“The debate right now is fundamental and there’s one candidate in this race who can actually make the contrast that is necessary to take the Republican position, conservative position,” Santorum said outside the Supreme Court on Monday. “There is one candidate who is disqualified to make the case.”

….”Romney and his aides view things differently: Since the outset of his 2012 run, they have privately predicted that “Romneycare” would be an asset in the general election that could help cast Romney as a kinder, gentler kind of Republican that swing voters can embrace.

More recently, Romney has sought to reassure conservatives by vowing to scrap the federal law “root and branch,” though he has also pointed to the Massachusetts law as an example of his compassion as a governor.”

fn2.

…”Host: Is there a concern that Santorum and Gingrich might force the governor to tack so far to the right it would hurt him with moderate voters in the general election?

Fehrnstrom: Well, I think you hit a reset button for the fall campaign. Everything changes. It’s almost like an Etch A Sketch. You can kind of shake it up and restart all over again.”….

Mitt Romney: The Consummate Etch A Sketch | RedState

http://www.redstate.com/dhorowitz3/2012/03/21/mitt-romney-the-consummate-etch-a-sketch/

fn3.

Not a parody:Romney Surrogate: Electability Should Trump ‘Beliefs & Principles’ #aynrand #2012 – fightingstatism

http://fightingstatism.posterous.com/not-a-parodyromney-surrogate-electability-sho

fn4.

Try a little Pinochet – Sun Sentinel

http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2006-12-22/news/0612210779_1_low-infant-mortality-civil-society-civil-liberties

fn5

see Mitt Romney or not, GOP is coming for ‘Obamacare’ – Alexander Burns – POLITICO.com

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0312/74629_Page2.html

fn6.

Why Santorum Must Be Defeated – fightingstatism

http://fightingstatism.posterous.com/why-santorum-must-be-defeated

fn7

Obama: I’ll put my record up against any president

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/theoval/post/2011/12/obama-ill-put-my-record-up-against-any-president/1

”PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, we’re not done yet. I’ve got five more years of stuff to do. But not only saving this country from a great depression. Not only saving the auto industry. But putting in place a system in which we’re gonna start lowering health care costs and you’re never gonna go bankrupt because you get sick or somebody in your family gets sick. Making sure that we have reformed the financial system, so we never again have taxpayer-funded bailouts, and the system is more stable and secure. Making sure that we’ve got millions of kids out here who are able to go to college because we’ve expanded student loans and made college more affordable. Ending Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Decimating al Qaeda, including Bin Laden being taken off the field. Restoring America’s respect around the world.

The issue here is not gonna be a list of accomplishments. As you said yourself, Steve, you know, I would put our legislative and foreign policy accomplishments in our first two years against any president — with the possible exceptions of Johnson, FDR, and Lincoln — just in terms of what we’ve gotten done in modern history. But, you know, but when it comes to the economy, we’ve got a lot more work to do. And we’re gonna keep on at it.”…..

fn8

Mitt Romney or not, GOP is coming for ‘Obamacare’ – Alexander Burns – POLITICO.com

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0312/74629_Page2.html

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Filed under 2012 elections, Activism, Current events, Objectivism, Politics

#CNNdebate transcript for #scprimary #Romney #Newt & #Santorum on #Obamacare

South Carolina GOP CNN debate, Jan. 19, 2012. Transcript – Lynn Sweet

http://blogs.suntimes.com/sweet/2012/01/south_carolina_gop_cnn_debate_.html

….”Number two,we have to go after a complete repeal. (Cheers, applause.) And that’s going to have to have to happen — that — that’s going to have to happen with — with a House and a Senate, hopefully that are Republican. If we don’t have a Republican majority, I think we’re going to be able to convince some Democrats that when the American people stand up loud and clear and say, we do not want “Obamacare,” we do not want the higher taxes, we do not want a $500 billion cut in Medicare to pay for “Obamacare,” I think you’re going to see the American people stand with our president and say, let’s get rid of “Obamacare.”

But we’ll replace it. And I’ve — and I’ve laid out what I’ll replace it with. First, it’s a bill that does care for people that have pre-existing conditions. If they’ve got a pre-existing condition and they’ve been previously insured, they won’t be denied insurance going forward.

Secondly, I’ll allow people to own their own insurance rather than just be able to get it from their employer. I want people to be able to take their insurance with them if they go from job to job. (Applause.) So — so we’ll make it work in the way that’s designed to have health care act like a market, a consumer market, as opposed to have it run like Amtrak and the Post Office. That’s what’s at risk — (applause) — at stake here.

Do we — we go back to this. Ours is the party of free enterprise, freedom, markets, consumer choice. Theirs is the party of government knowledge, government domination, where Barack Obama believes that he knows better for the American people what’s best for them. He’s wrong. We’re right. That’s why we’re going to win. (Applause.)

MR. KING: Mr. Speaker, you heard the skepticism. It’s a Southern Republican voter. But he’s skeptical, and he knows how Washington works.

MR. GINGRICH: Well, sure.

MR. KING: He’s watched Washington work. He’s asked: Can it be reversed in its entirety. You — you were the speaker of the House. You understand how this works. How? How can it be repealed in this current political environment?

MR. GINGRICH: Well, let me say, first of all, if you’ve watched Washington and you’re not skeptical, you haven’t learned anything. (Laughter, applause.) I mean, this — this system is a total mess right now.

Second, can you get it repealed in total? Sure. You have to elect a House, a Senate and a president committed to that. It has to be a major part of the fall campaign. And I think that, frankly, on our side with any of us, it’s going to be a major part of the fall campaign. The American people are frightened of bureaucratic centralized medicine, they deeply distrust Washington, and the pressure will be to repeal it.

And a lot of what Governor Romney has said I think is actually pretty good, sound stuff for part of the replacement. I would always repeal all of it, because I so deeply distrust the congressional staffs that I would not want them to be able to pick and choose which things they kept.

But let me make one observation. You raised a good example. Why is President Obama for young people being allowed to stay on their parents’ insurance until 26? Because he can’t get any jobs for them to go out and buy their own insurance. (Cheers, applause.)

I mean, I — I have an — I have an offer — I have an offer to the parents of America: Elect us, and your kids will be able to move out, because they’ll have work. (Cheers, applause.)

MR. KING: (Laughs.) Let’s — (inaudible) — Senator Santorum, you heard Governor Romney and you heard Speaker Gingrich. Do you trust them, if one of them is the Republican Party’s nominee, and potentially the next president of the United States, to repeal this law?

MR. SANTORUM: The biggest — the biggest thing we have to do is elect a president. I think Newt’s right. The problem is that two of the people up here would be very difficult to elect on, I think, the most important issue that this country is dealing with right now, which is the robbing of our freedom because of “Obamacare.”

Governor Romney tells a very nice story about what his plan is now. It wasn’t his plan when he was in a position to do a plan. When he was governor of Massachusetts, he put forth “Romneycare,” which was not a bottom-up, free-market system. It was a government-run health care system that was the basis of “Obamacare.” And it has been an abject failure, and he has stood by it.

He’s stood by the fact that it’s $8 billion more expensive — (applause) — than under the current law. He’s stood by the fact that Massachusetts has the highest health insurance premiums of any state in the country; it is 27 percent more expensive than the average state in the country. Doctors — if you’re in the Massachusetts health care system, over 50 percent of the doctors now are not seeing new patients — primary care doctors are not seeing new patients. Those who do get to see a patient are waiting 44 days, on average, for the care.

It is an abject disaster.

He’s standing by it, and he’s going to have to have to run against a president — he’s going to have to run against a president who’s going to say, well, look, look at what you did for Massachusetts, and you’re the one criticizing me for what I’ve done? I used your model for it.

And then — (cheers, applause) — then we have Speaker Gingrich, who has been for an individual mandate, not back in the time that just was — Heritage was floating around in the ’90s, but as late as — comments (since/in ?) 2008, just a few years ago, he stood up and said that we should have an individual mandate or post a $150,000 bond. How many $150,000 bondholders do we have here who can post a bond for their health insurance?

These are two folks who don’t present the clear contrast that I do, who was the author of health savings accounts, which is the primary basis of every single — (cheers, applause) — conservative reform of health care. I was the author of it back in 1991 and ’92, 20 years ago. I’ve been fighting for health reform, private-sector, bottom-up, the way America works best, for 20 years, while these two guys were playing footsies with the left. (Cheers, applause.)

MR. KING: I want to bring Congressman Paul — I’ll bring him into the discussion in just a moment, but Senator Santorum directly challenged the governor and then the speaker. Governor, you first.

MR. ROMNEY: Well, so much of what the senator said was wrong. Let me mention a few of the things.

First of all, the system in my state is not a government-run system. Ninety-eight — 92 percent of the people had their own insurance before the system was put in place, and nothing changed for them. They still had the same private insurance. And the 8 percent of the uninsured, they bought private insurance, not government insurance. And the people in the state still favor the plan three to one.

And it certainly doesn’t work perfectly. Massachusetts, by the way, had the highest insurance costs before the plan was put in place and after, but fortunately, the rate of growth has slowed down a little less than the overall nation. And one of the things I was proud of is that individuals who wanted to buy their own insurance saw their rates –when they were not part of a big group — saw their rates drop by some 40 percent with our plan.

Is it perfect? Absolutely not. But I do believe that having been there, having been on the front lines, showing that I have compassion for people that don’t have insurance but that the Obama plan is a 2,700-page, massive tax increase, Medicare-cutting monster, I know how to cut it. I’ll eliminate it. I will repeal is and I’ll return the — I’ll return the power to the states, where the power for caring for the uninsured ought to reside constitutionally. Thank you.

MR. SANTORUM: Yeah, I’d like —

MR. KING: Senator Santorum, he says your facts are wrong.

MR. SANTORUM: Well, they’re simply not wrong. The fact is that, yes, you’re right, Governor Romney, 92 percent of people did have health insurance in Massachusetts, but that wasn’t private-sector health insurance. A lot of those people were, as you know, on Medicare and Medicaid, so they’re already on government insurance, and you just expanded it, in fact. Over half the people who came on the rolls since you put “Romneycare” into effect are fully subsidized by the state of Massachusetts, and a lot of those are on the Medicaid program. So the idea that you have created this marketplace and — and — with this government-run health care system where you have very prescriptive programs about reimbursement rates, you have a very prescriptive program just like what President Obama is trying to put in place here, you’re arguing for a plan — you’re defending a plan that is top-down. It is not a free-market health care system. It is not bottom-up. It is prescriptive in government. It was the basis for “Obamacare.” And we do not draw a distinction that it’s going to be effective for us just because it was the state level, not the federal level. (Applause.)

MR. ROMNEY: (Chuckles.)

MR. KING: If you want, Governor, quickly.

MR. ROMNEY: Sure, absolutely.

First of all, as you probably know, Medicaid is not a state program. All right?

MR. SANTORUM: Of course it is. It’s a state and federal program.

MR. ROMNEY: Medicaid is as demanded by the federal government, and it is — it’s — it is a mandate —

MR. SANTORUM: (Off mic.)

MR. ROMNEY: — it’s a mandate by the federal government and it’s shared 50/50 state and federal. The people of Massachusetts who are on Medicaid, I would like to end that program at the federal level, take the Medicaid dollars and return them to the states, and allow states — states to craft their own plans.

That would make the plan we had in Massachusetts a heck of a lot better. My view is, get the federal government out of Medicaid, get it out of health care, return it to the states. And if you want to go be governor of Massachusetts, fine. But I want to be president, and let states take responsibility for their own plan. (Cheers, applause.)

MR. KING: Mr. Speaker, it may seem like a while ago, Mr. Speaker, but Senator Santorum made the point, in his view, you don’t have credibility on this.

MR. GINGRICH: No, what he — what he said, which I found mildly amazing, was that he thought I would have a hard time debating Barack Obama over health care. Now, in fact, I — as Republican whip, I led the charge against “Hillarycare” in the House. As speaker of the House, I helped preside over the conference which wrote into law his idea on health savings accounts. So I was delighted to help him get it to be law. (Applause.) And — and the fact is, I helped found the Center for Health Transformation. I wrote a book called “Saving lives and Saving Money” in 2002. You can go to healthtransformation.net, and you will see hundreds of ideas — none of which resemble Barack Obama’s programs.

So I’d be quite happy to have a three-hour Lincoln-Douglas-style debate with Barack Obama. I’d let him use a teleprompter. I’ll just rely on knowledge. We’ll do fine. (Cheers, applause.)

MR. KING: Senator, you’re — I want to bring Congressman Paul in. You’re shaking your head. Quickly.

MR. SANTORUM: The core of “Obamacare” is an individual mandate. It is what is being litigated in the Supreme Court right now. It is government top-down telling every business and every American what kind of health care that you will have. That is the problem with “Obamacare” at the core of it. And the speaker supported it repeatedly for a 10-year period. So when he goes and says, I can, you know, run rings around President Obama in a Lincoln-Douglas debate, you can’t run rings around the fact, Newt, that you supported the primary core basis of what President Obama’s put in place.

MR. GINGRICH: Look, just one — one brief comment. One —

MR. KING: All right, quickly, Mr. Speaker. The Congressman is getting lonely down here. Let’s go.

(Applause.)

MR. GINGRICH: Well, one — just one brief comment. Of course you can. I can say, you know, I was wrong, and I figured it out; you were wrong, and you didn’t. (Cheers, applause.)

MR. SANTORUM: You held that — Newt — Newt, you held that position for over 10 years. And, you know, it’s not going to be the most attractive thing to go out there and say, you know, it took me 10 or 12 years to figure out I was wrong, when guys like Rick Santorum knew it was wrong from the beginning. (Cheers, applause.)

MR. KING: Congressman Paul, you have the floor. Do you trust these men to repeal “Obamacare”?

REP. PAUL: Thank you! (Laughter, applause.) I thought you were — I thought maybe you were prejudiced against doctors and a doctor that practiced medicine in the military or something. (Cheers, applause.)

No, I want to address the question. The gentleman asked whether he thinks we can repeal “Obamacare.” Theoretically, we can. The likelihood isn’t all that good. We can diminish some of the effect. But I’m more concerned about a bigger picture of what’s happening, and that is government involvement in medicine.

I — I had the privilege of practicing medicine in the early ’60s, before we had any government. It worked rather well, and there was nobody on the street suffering with no medical care. But Medicare and Medicaid came in and –and — and it just expanded. But even when we had the chance to cut back on it, when we had a Republican Congress and a Republican president, we — we gave them prescription drug programs. Senator Santorum supported it. (Laughs.) You know, that’s expanding the government! (Cheers, applause.) So — so it’s endless.

And the — and most of them are bankrupt. Prescription drugs, they — they’re not going to be financed; Medicare is not financeable; Medicaid’s in trouble. But nobody talks about where the money’s going to come from.

Now, even in my budget proposal — which is very, very tough, because I’m going to cut a trillion dollars the first year — but I try to really — (cheers, applause) — even though these programs should have never started that a lot of people are dependent on, I want to try to protect the people who are dependent on — on medical care.

Now, where does the money come? My suggestion is, look at some of the overseas spending that we don’t need to be doing. (Cheers, applause.) We have — we have troops in Korea since — since the Korean War, in Japan since World War II, in Germany since World War — those are subsidies to these countries. And we keep fighting these wars that don’t need to be fought, they’re undeclared, they never end. Newt pointed out, you know, World War II was won in less than four years; Afghanistan, we’re there for 10 years. Nobody says, where does the money come?We could work our way out of here and take care of these people on — with these medical needs, but we can’t do it with the current philosophy of the government taking care of everybody forever on medical care, cradle to grave, and being the policeman of the world.

We will get rid of all this government program, unfortunately because we’re going bankrupt and you’re going to have runaway inflation and our checks are going to bounce. And that’s going to be a lot worse problem than we’re facing tonight. (Cheers, applause.)

MR. KING: All right. I’m going to ask all of our candidates to stand by, our audience as well. We have a couple breaks tonight. We’re going to take one of them now.

One candidate on this stage suggested this week that two candidates should get out of the race. One of them listened. We’ll get the reaction from the other coming up.

And also coming up, this is just in: While we’ve been on the air having this debate, Speaker Gingrich has released his tax returns. He’s put them online. We’ll ask him what’s in them when we come back. (Cheers, applause.)….

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The results of the #2012 Ames #Iowa straw poll & what they signify #tcot #teaparty #tlot

RRD:The Ames Straw Poll results are in. Percentages are approximations. 16,892 ballots 1.Bachmann 29% 2.Paul 28% 3.Pawlenty 14% 4.Santorum 10% 5.Cain 9% 6.Perry (write in) 4% 7.Romney (write in)3% 8.Gingrich (write in) 2% 9.Hunstman(write in) 69 votes 0.4% 10.Mccotter 35 votes 0.2% Bachmann wins Ames straw poll; Ron Paul takes second – TheHill.com http://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/176771-bachmann-wins-ames-straw-poll ….”A House member has never finished in the top two; extraordinarily, two House lawmakers finished nearly neck-and-neck toward the top. Bachmann is the first woman to ever win the straw poll. “… RRD:What does Ames signify? ….”Of the five straw poll winners in history, three have gone on to win the Iowa caucus, two managed to secure the Republican nomination and only one has ever made it to the White House. Statistically speaking, a highly coveted win in Ames gives a candidate about a 20 percent chance of even getting on the ballot in the general election.”…. …”Ames is the first real test of voters’ confidence in each candidate…..” For example, many expected Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback to take the top spot at the 2007 straw poll. When he turned up with a comparatively dismal third place finish behind Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee, his supporters’ confidence was shaken and his fundraising reports showed it. From April to June, in the first quarter before the straw poll, Brownback raised more than $1.4 million. But the following quarter, which ran from July through October, his fundraising dropped to $925,000; by the last quarter of 2007, Brownback pulled in less than $140,000. In Ames, it is not necessarily about winning, but about doing better than expected, which is why the nine candidates on the ballot this year are all downplaying where they hope to finish. As ABC’s Matt Jaffe pointed out, Pawlenty has said he will be happy with anything higher than sixth place. “…. What Is the Ames Straw Poll? – ABC News http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/ames-straw-poll/story?id=14294230

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