In a world of double talk, lies, and evasion following the years of George Bush, Dennis Kucinich has managed to outdo everyone in his reversal on health care.
On Monday of this week, controversial KPFK talk show host Lila Garrett interviewed him on her program "Connect the Dots," and reminded him of his determination on her show the Monday before to stand for principle and oppose Obamacare.
The attached MP3 file contains the portion of the interview concerning health care. The omitted, first part of the interview concerned the House Afghanistan war debate.
His words raise the question of how anyone could say what he said then and reverse himself in two days without anything in the bill addressing any of his concerns. It's mind boggling.
His words merit review. He began:
"Well I am going to vote against it, unless something changes that brings back a robust public option and also protects the rights of states to pursue single payer without a legal attack under the ERISA preemption doctrine.
"I have to because this is otherwise an intensification of the privatization of our health care system, a giveaway of billion annually to insurance interests [and] no control over premiums."
"Without a public option, you don't have any control over premiums. Insurance companies can charge for premiums through the roof. They have got four or five years of consecutive increases of premiums. Without control of premiums, we are talking of one or two things: either what would be covered would continue to shrink, or they are going to charge the government more in the subsidy end of it."
"Just to say that people have health insurance doesn't mean they are going to have health care because insurance companies make money not providing health care. I can't say that enough. They make money not providing health care."
"And so this reform within the context of a for profit system and is quite problematic. I believe that it was right to pass legislation to take away the antitrust exemption that insurance companies have. We should pass individual legislation to have people with preexisting conditions covered. We should have some kind of mechanism with which we could impose price controls so that we could stop the rapid rise of premiums."
"We could do all those things individually. We don't have to give the insurance companies carte blanche here. Why do we have to give them a pound of flesh just so 30 million people can be covered. Why don't we just find a way to cover people who don't have it without having to go through the insurance companies by having it extend Medicare. That is what I advocate."
"So it's not like this is the only way we can ever do it and if we don't it the whole world is going to die. Please, let's get real about this. If this doesn't pass, we have to go back to work and find a way to cover people who need help without letting the insurance companies rob the government."
"That's why I say health care is a right in a democratic society and, well, maybe that's not what this bill is about [but] we need to keep fighting that battle."
Fox News Glen Beck had an one explanation for Kucinich's reversal:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIM RUSSERT, MODERATOR: Did you see a UFO?
KUCINICH: Uh, I did. And the rest of the account -- it was an unidentified flying object, OK?