One of the most amazing abilities Donald Trump has is being able to lie about his own record and get away with it. In an exchange with Sen. Ted Cruz during Thursday's CNN debate in Houston, Trump was directly challenged on his past documented support for single-payer universal health care, and he lied again. As The Blaze recorded the exchange:
Republican presidential contender Ted Cruz cross-examined 2016 rival Donald Trump on Thursday's GOP debate stage, getting the billionaire businessman on record denying many of his former positions on health care.
"True or false: you said the government should pay for everyone's health care?" Cruz asked Trump.
"That's false," Trump flatly said.
"You've never said that?" Cruz asked, seemingly surprised by the denial.
"I said it worked in a couple countries," Trump quipped.
"But you never stood on this debate stage and said, 'It worked great in Canada and Scotland, we should do it here'?" Cruz pressed.
"No, I did not," Trump replied
The fact is, as Trump told CBS' Scott Pelley in a "60 Minutes" interview, while claiming he would repeal ObamaCare and replace it with – wait for it, government-paid universal health care:
Scott Pelley: Universal health care?
Donald Trump: I am going to take care of everybody. I don't care if it costs me votes or not. Everybody's going to be taken care of much better than they're taken care of now.
Scott Pelley: The uninsured person is going to be taken care of how?
Donald Trump: They're going to be taken care of. I would make a deal with existing hospitals to take care of people. And, you know what, if this is probably--
Scott Pelley: Make a deal? Who pays for it?
Donald Trump: --the government's gonna pay for it….
Everyone's gonna be covered and the government's going to pay for it. That's universal health care. That's ObamaCare. Trump supports the individual mandate, telling CNN's Anderson Cooper he would force people to buy insurance or pay a fine:
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump told CNN's Anderson Cooper he likes the mandate established by President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act that everyone must have insurance or pay a fine.
Cooper asked Trump during a town hall forum on Thursday night "If Obamacare is repealed and there's no mandate for everybody to have insurance, what's to -- why would [an] insurance company… insure somebody who has a pre-existing condition?"
Trump responded, "Well, I like the mandate. OK…
Trump likes single-payer as Ted Cruz rightly pointed out, and Trump said so on a national debate stage last August. As the Weekly Standard reported:
The man leading the GOP primary polls made it clear on Thursday night that he still has a high opinion of health care systems that are to the left of Obamacare.
During the first GOP debate, moderator Bret Baier said to Donald Trump, "15 years ago, you called yourself a liberal on health care. You were for a single-payer system, a Canadian-style system."
"As far as single payer, it works in Canada," Trump replied. "It works incredibly well in Scotland…
The irony here is that Trump blames Ted Cruz for making John Roberts Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, who came up with the novel and bizarre idea that the individual mandate and the associated fine was a tax and therefore was not unconstitutional and within the power of Congress to impose. Yet Donald Trump has said he likes the mandate while endorsing single-payer and government-paid universal health insurance. This is definitely a "Whiskey Tango Foxtrot" moment.
Trump tap dances around the truth and, as Ted Cruz also points out, every time someone accurately cite his record he responds with a charge that they're lying about his record. He has praised single-payer. He like the individual mandate. He supports government-paid universal health care. When he says he would repeal ObamaCare, he's lying.
Daniel John Sobieski is a freelance writer whose pieces have appeared inInvestor's Business Daily, Human Events, Reason Magazine, the Manchester Union Leader and the Chicago Sun-Times among other publications.