Transcript: Gen. Casey, Steele vs Kaine

KAINE: The issue -- no, just -- the issue in this bill that is so important to most Americans is that you're not going to get your policy pulled out from under you when you get sick. And when you change jobs, which a lot of Americans do, seven or eight times in life, you won't get turned down for a pre-existing condition.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But that's until 2013.

KAINE: When the Republicans...

(CROSSTALK)

KAINE: Just hold on. When the Republicans put their own plan on the table this week, they didn't tackle pre-existing conditions. We're starting right away...

STEELE: They did -- we did, too.

(CROSSTALK)

STEELE: ... pre-existing conditions. Where's your tort reform? Where's your portability? Where's your -- where's your small-business pools? Where's your program for health savings accounts?

Where are the various programs that you don't need 2,000 pages to get done? You don't need to overhaul the entire system the way the Democrats have put forth last night.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But, Mr. Steele, aren't you concerned now?

You've got the -- the stimulus bill earlier this year, no Republican votes in the House, three in the Senate; one Republican vote in the House, here, that, to a lot of people who are hurting right now, that this is going to seem like the party -- the Republican Party is the party of no?

STEELE: Look, we -- I appreciate that perspective, and that's the image that the Democratic Party would like to have us see. But the reality of it is, and I go back to this point, that Speaker -- Speaker...

(LAUGHTER)

... Leader Boehner and Leader McConnell both have had opportunities to put bills out there, to make amendments, all of which have been rejected.

So the reality of it is, now we've got an opportunity to compare and contrast their bill to our alternative.

(CROSSTALK)

And the reality -- the reality still remains -- the reality still remains that, at the end of the day, this thing grows the size of government; it inserts the government between the doctor and the patient. It now requires mandates on states that can't afford, and it cuts $500 billion from a Medicare program that everyone in this country knows is on the road to bankruptcy.

And the final point is, all of this is prepaid by taxpayers today for a program that they won't even begin to access for four years. Now, let me ask you this.

(CROSSTALK)

KAINE: George, I've got to...

(CROSSTALK)

STEELE: No, no, let me make my one last point, here; then you can...

STEPHANOPOULOS: Ask the question. Then you can respond.

STEELE: Let me ask you this. Would you buy a car today -- put the money on the table today and take deliver four years from now? Because that's exactly what you're doing with this health care system.

(CROSSTALK)

STEELE: And this is not a great car.

KAINE: I'm going to let Michael be the used car salesman. I'm going to talk about health reform.

(CROSSTALK)

KAINE: ... overwhelming majority of Americans want to see this. And what the Republicans are doing -- party of no on the stimulus.

They were letting the economy go into a free-fall, not willing to do a single thing about it, losing 800,000 jobs a month, GDP down by 6.5 percent at the end of the Bush administration. They stood back, they were going to let it collapse.

Thank goodness the Democrats and the president put a Recovery Act in place that has GDP growing again. Party of no on health care, only one vote...

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