A collection of quotes from Republican members of the 111th Congress weighing in on the important issues of the day: how health care reform will kill you; the nation's descent into socialism, Nazism (or both); and why caribou like to mate next to oil pipelines:
Health Care Scaremongering
"Last week Democrats released a health care bill which essentially said to America's seniors: Drop dead." —Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite (R-Fla.)
"One in five people have to die because they went to socialized medicine!…I would hate to think that among five women, one of 'em is gonna die because we go to socialized care." —Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas)
The Republicans' health care plan "is pro-life because it will not put seniors in a position of being put to death by their government." —Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.)
"We've been battling this socialist health care, the nationalization of health care, that is going to absolutely kill senior citizens. They'll put them on lists and force them to die early because they won't get the treatment as early as they need." —Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas)
"You have every right to fear. You shouldn't have counseling at the end of life….We should not have a government program that determines if you're going to pull the plug on grandma." —Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa)
At a town hall meeting in August, Rep. Wally Herger (R-Calif.) described health care reform as a "threat to our democracy." After a member of the audience volunteered, "I am a proud right-wing terrorist," Herger replied, "Amen, God bless you. There is a great American."
"This is the best health care system in the world. We don't wait in line…We will stand in a line sometimes for a concert or for a ball game when we're trying to cram 50,000 or 100,000 people through those gates in a short period of time for a definitive time when something starts. That's about the only time that Americans stand in line." —Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa)
"They're going to save money by rationing care, getting you in a long line. Places like Canada, United Kingdom, and Europe. People die when they're in line."—Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa)
"That's exactly what's going on in Canada and Great Britain today. They don't have the appreciation of life, as we do in our society, evidently…A lot of people are gonna die, this program of 'government option' is being touted as being this panacea, the savior of allowing people to have quality health care at an affordable price—is gonna kill people." —Rep. Paul Broun (R-Ga.)
"When people have a cold in say England or Canada, they call a doctor. But when they have cancer or diabetes they call a travel agent and want to come to america because we still have the best system in the world... Honestly, I'm scared. I'm scared for my two little babies that are turning a year old in a few days and I think the American people should be scared to see government take over health care." —Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.)
"It's cruel and inhuman to ask the Canadians to give up on their access to good health care here in the United States of America…Let me conclude by simply saying that this Obamacare is cruel and inhuman to Canadians." —Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa)
"The problems we currently face with our health care system would be nothing compared to the crisis we would face should government bureaucrats begin dictating what treatments we can and cannot have...It is dangerous for America to replace our current health care system by diving headlong into socialized medicine." —Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.)
"There are no Americans who don't have healthcare. Everybody in this country has access to healthcare." —Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.)
At a town hall meeting in August, a distraught woman told Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) that her husband's insurance wouldn't cover treatment for a brain injury. Coburn replied, "The idea that the government is the solution to our problems is an inaccurate, a very inaccurate statement"—and told her to contact his office.
Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) decried government-run medical care while describing how he'd had a heart attack on Capitol Hill: "I was lucky that was in the basement of the Capitol and there was a doctor with an EKG machine literally between myself and where that door is. That was pure luck. And I'm also lucky that because I'm a congressman there was an ambulance outside the Capitol."
"I hope when we go back in after Labor Day that we will step back, start over, and think about the incremental adjustments we need to make in the world's finest healthcare." —Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)
"This is the abortion industry bailout bill of 2009. It will cause hundreds of thousands per year additional abortions because it will market it, provide new venues, new abortion clinics and public subsidies, public funds will be paying for abortions." —Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.)
"The goal of this legislation has been clear from the beginning. To pass a public option that will serve as a gateway to single payer, government-controlled health care...Once the government is the only option, it will inevitably have to ration care." —Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.)
"I would rather stop this socialization of health care because once the government pays for your health care, they have every right to tell you what you eat, what you drink, how you exercise, where you live." —Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas)
"What we have to do today is make a covenant, to slit our wrists, be blood brothers on this thing…We will do whatever it takes to make sure this doesn't pass…Right now, we are looking at reaching down the throat and ripping the guts out of freedom. And we may never be able to restore it if we don't man up and take this one on." —Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R-Minn.)