Transcript: 10 Freshmen Lawmakers Talk With Diane Sawyer


DIANE SAWYER: I want you to know that Congressman Brooks told me to ask tough questions.

RAND PAUL: I know. But let's say I have a heart attack and I survive. If I survive, my health insurance expires in one year. That's a problem. Then I have a preexisting condition. But let's say we sold health insurance like term life insurance, and I had a 20-year contract. Then I have a heart attack, I survive, and my rate doesn't go up on my term life insurance. There were ways to get the marketplace involved, but instead we chose the government solution, not the market solution.

DIANE SAWYER: As you know, Congressman Mike Kelly of Pennsylvania said he's renouncing his tax payer subsidized health insurance that he gets coming here to Congress. How many of you are going to renounce it? The rest of you? Why not?

PAUL GOSAR: First of all-- Congress should not be exempt from rules they pass. And that's exactly what-- what happened here. In fact, I asked everybody to denounce that. Because we shouldn't be taking that-- unlike anybody else in-- regular, everyday America.

FRANK GUINTA: I-- I'm not taking the health insurance either-- maybe for different reasons. But I want to go back to the point you were talking about earlier. This is not Nancy Pelosi versus the new Republicans. This is the will of the people. And the people spoke in our country. They do not like government-run mandated health care.

And the point that was made that we are resilient is 100 percent accurate. And we've got to start being personally responsible, rather than always looking for a government solution. Government has a role, but it should be limited, it should be effective, it should be efficient. I think most Americans respect that.

DIANE SAWYER: The rest of you who are not renouncing it, how do you answer this?

MIKE LEE: There's a big difference between receiving health insurance through one's employer on the one hand, and on the other hand, establishing a national regulatory program that tells people where to go to do-- to the doctor and how to pay for it. And they-- they-- they are nonequivalent. They're not economical equivalents, they're not regulatory-- equivalents.

DIANE SAWYER: If-- if the taxpayer doesn't have an option but to support--

MIKE LEE: Look--

DIANE SAWYER: The taxpayer has no choice.

MIKE LEE: Health care regulation is fundamentally a-- an-- a creature of state law. It's states that license doctors, and nurses, and clinics, and hospitals. It's states that regulate the health insurance industry that establish the tort law system that government medical malpractice suits. States are in the best position to be able to regulate the provision of medical services.

And there are huge disparities. There's tremendous diversity among the states, including my own state, where it costs about half to provide health care to-- a citizen over the course of a year than it does in Washington D.C. States need to be able to respond to differences in their demographics, in their geography, and-- and in other conditions within their state. This is a state issue.


You know there's an attending physician downstairs in the building here, which I don't know that many Americans have in their office places. There's an attending physician available for you. Going to keep it, going to cut it out?

MIKE LEE: Those members who choose to visit that doctor for treatment pay for it the same way that it would-- their other doctor.

Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...