ABC News’ Christine Byun: During his second trip to Iowa since announcing his candidacy, Republican candidate Fred Thompson pushed for increased military spending and supported the president’s coming veto of SCHIP expansion.
Thompson argued that "the military is stretched too thin" and pushed for more military spending on resources for the country’s national defense.
Thompson also talked about the economy, saying the nation was on an “unsustainable spending pattern and no one seems to be willing to put the brakes on it.”
"We’re still spending like we weren’t at war. In prior conflicts, the discretionary spending has gone way down. We’ve understood we can’t have guns and butter both at the same time. We don’t understand that anymore,” Thompson said.
Thompson later told reporters that he does not support the legislation that expands the State Children’s Health Insurance Program. President’s Bush has threatened to veto the bipartisan SCHIP bill – which would expand coverage to millions more uninsured children.
Thompson said while SCHIP started with a “good purpose,” he believes it’s too far-reaching and would harm the economy.
“The government shouldn’t be controlling all of that, especially if it’s going to destroy our private insurance companies. We need those companies out there competing with each other,” Thompson said.