Friday, February 26, 2016

Let 'Em Die

In September, 2009 Representative Alan Grayson of Florida stood on the House floor and maintained

It’s my duty and pride tonight to be able to announce exactly what the Republicans plan to do for health care in America… It’s a very simple plan. Here it is. The Republican health care plan for America: “don’t get sick.” If you have insurance don’t get sick, if you don’t have insurance, don’t get sick; if you’re sick, don’t get sick. Just don’t get sick. … If you do get sick America, the Republican health care plan is this: “die quickly."

Oh, yes- Grayson is a Democrat, which at the time seemed obvious, but perhaps not so now.

Following Grayson's statement (below), House Republicans threatened, but later declined, to "introduce a resolution condemning Grayson for breaching House decorum," according to CNN at the time.

After initially being repulsed by the Representative's truth-telling, Republicans may have decided it wasn't entirely insulting.  When the GOP debate Thursday night in Houston (Houston in song here, here, and here; Trump below) turned to health care, Donald Trump made the obligatory nod to free enterprise and implied criticism of Europe, asserting "I do not want socialized medicine" and denying he ever had suggested health care in the USA should be anything like that in Canada or Scotland.  A portion of  the argument, however, included

CRUZ: Did you say if you want people to die on the streets, if you don’t support socialized health care, you have no heart.

TRUMP: Correct. I will not let people die on the streets if I’m president.

CRUZ: Have you said you’re a liberal on health care?

TRUMP: Excuse me. Let me talk. If people...

CRUZ: Talk away. Explain your plan, please.

TRUMP: If people — my plan is very simple. I will not — we’re going to have private — we are going to have health care, but I will not allow people to die on the sidewalks and the streets of our country if I’m president. You may let it and you may be fine with it...

CRUZ: So does the government pay for everyone’s health care?

TRUMP: ... I’m not fine with it. We are going to take those people...

CRUZ: Yes or no. Just answer the question.

TRUMP: Excuse me. We are going to take those people and those people are going to be serviced by doctors and hospitals. We’re going to make great deals on it, but we’re not going to let them die in the streets.

CRUZ: Who pays for it?

RUBIO: Well, can I just clarify something?

BLITZER: Gentleman, please.

RUBIO: Wolf, no. I want to clarify something.

BLITZER: Gentlemen please. I want to move on.

RUBIO: This is a Republican debate, right? Because that attack about letting people die in the streets...

That was unsettling to Marco, who believes Republicans wouldn't care about people dying in the streets. He might be right, too, because Trump's references to not letting people die under those circumstances were among the few statements last night which got no applause or whoops of support. They did, though, make it easier for Rubio to complain that the front-runner had repeated himself four times.

The real problem, of course, was not in the repetition but in what was being repeated. Part of that was Trump implying that we should stick to conservative principles but only up to a point where individuals actually would perish in front of us.

For Marco Rubio (and Ted Cruz), that point hasn't been reached and apparently never would be.  All of that either makes Alan Grayson insightful, psychic, or just one to state the obvious.

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