Rand Paul says people who support universal healthcare 'believe in slavery'
Rand Paul, the freshman senator from Kentucky, was speaking recently about healthcare, specifically the new healthcare law some refer to as "Obamacare." Like many Republicans, Paul, the son of Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), doesn't like it. Unlike many conservatives, the "tea party" darling doesn't like the law because it reminds him of slavery.
"With regard to the idea of whether you have a right to healthcare, you have to realize what that implies. It’s not an abstraction. I’m a physician. That means you have a right to come to my house and conscript me," Paul said recently in a Senate subcommittee hearing.
"It means you believe in slavery. It means that you’re going to enslave not only me, but the janitor at my hospital, the person who cleans my office, the assistants who work in my office, the nurses," Paul said, adding that there is "an implied use of force."
"If I’m a physician in your community and you say you have a right to healthcare, you have a right to beat down my door with the police, escort me away and force me to take care of you? That’s ultimately what the right to free healthcare would be," Paul said.
Alex Pardee of Salon wonders whether Paul would also agree that lawyers have been slaves for over 200 years since the Constitution clearly states that people shall "enjoy the right" to have "the assistance of counsel" in criminal prosecutions.
Think Progress' Alex Seitz-Wald writes "by Paul’s logic, the pope supports slavery," because in November, Pope Benedict XVI and other Catholic Church leaders proclaimed that governments should consider healthcare a priority since it is one of the "inalienable rights" of man.
-- Tony Pierce
Photo: Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) talks with reporters on Capitol Hill. Credit: Chip Somodevilla /Getty Images