In an interview, Tom DeLay made some remarkable comments:
- “More important than that is that it’s been over 10 years since we voted to raise any federal taxes. How did we do that? We grew the economy. Through our policies, we helped the economy grow.” Ten years ago, the president was Bill Clinton. According to the Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, “In the late 1990s budget-tightening measures—aided by the U.S. economic boom—reduced the deficit and led to two consecutive federal budget surpluses (1998–99); back-to-back surpluses had last occurred in 1956–57. In 1998, President Clinton presented to Congress a balanced federal budget, the first such budget since 1969. A balanced budget was maintained through late 2001, but tax cuts, the cost of President Bush’s “war on terrorism,” increased defense and other spending, and the effects of an economic recession produced a deficit again beginning with the 2002 budget. The 2004 deficit reached a new record level, $412.6 billion, a figure that did not include tens of billions spent on the occupation and reconstruction of Iraq.”
- “And the most important thing that will change health care in this country is health savings accounts. That was the biggest victory in the Medicare system.” Robert N. Butler, M.D., in a presentation to the National Bipartisan Commission on the Future of Medicare, said, “While it is difficult to predict the future, current trends suggest that the population thirty years from now – the Baby Boomers – will be healthier and will enjoy a more robust quality of life than older persons today. Their financial status, however, is more difficult to predict, but studies indicate that the financial status of women will be lower than that of men. It is also clear that the subgroups of older persons with frailty and dementia will grow unless there is successful research, which depends upon significant investments in research now, since obviously, research takes time. African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans remain vulnerable, and do not enjoy the life expectancy of our majority population. Poverty, the lack of access to adequate health care early in life and lifestyle contribute to this unfortunate disadvantage in life expectancy.” Since it is only the well off who can afford to save, DeLay is effectively advocating a genocide of anyone who has not profited from the present economic order.
- “I think it’s incredibly important – before we even look at guest worker or anything else – to convince the American people that we are protecting our borders. I personally think that we ought to use the eyes and ears of our military.” But the military is already over-extended in Iraq and Afghanistan and the likelihood of a withdrawal is dubious at best. DeLay explains, “You cannot put soldiers on the border. Soldiers are trained to kill. They’re not trained as border patrol or police, and you cannot do that. But you can use their technology.” He would use the military’s technological surveillance capabilities, but without an armed force, how will you defend passive monitoring equipment?
- DeLay continued to blame Democrats for ethics charges against him, saying they don’t have any other agenda. He claims public support: “Have you not seen the television in the last few days? Members are out on television, they’re talking about it. There’s a huge conservative movement out there that’s working very hard. There’s friends all over the place working hard.” But even in his own district, “House Majority Leader Tom DeLay’s footing among his constituents has slipped drastically during the past year and a majority of his district disapproves of how he handled the Terri Schiavo case, according to a Houston Chronicle poll.”
- “The reason the judiciary has been able to impose a separation of church and state that’s nowhere in the Constitution is that Congress didn’t stop them. The reason we had judicial review is because Congress didn’t stop them. The reason we had a right to privacy is because Congress didn’t stop them.”