September 18th, 2013
08:17 PM ET
1 year ago

Debating O’Malley, Perry on healthcare: ‘putting more people on the Titanic’

Washington (CNN) – Red state-blue state governors Rick Perry and Martin O’Malley debated job creation and healthcare on Wednesday, with Perry equating adding people to Medicaid via Obamacare with “putting tens of thousands on the Titanic knowing how it’s going to turn out.”

Both men are thought to be contenders for the White House in 2016 and on CNN’s “Crossfire,” they aired out some of the key issues that are likely to define their campaigns should they run.

Perry has been noncommittal about his plans to pursue the Republican nomination for a second time after the Texas governor’s campaign imploded last year. He showed none of the hesitation of 2012 on Wednesday night however, hammering home points about Texas job creation through limited government policies.

Ex-advisers hint at future as Perry announces exit as governor

When challenged on the disproportionately large number of minimum wage jobs created in Texas along with the large number of Texans without health insurance, Perry stuck to his talking points.

“We’re about giving people freedom,” Perry said, the freedom to have a job and the freedom to choose whether or not they have health insurance.

Perry continually cited the businesses that have set up shop in Texas, including Amazon, Facebook and Toyota.

“They didn’t come there if they were worried about whether or not there was not going to be a skilled workforce, or people were going to have healthcare,” Perry said.

Perry and O’Malley clashed most sharply over jobs, in large part spurred by Perry’s media outreach aimed at poaching Maryland businesses.

In response to Texas’ business-friendly environment, O’Malley fell back on job-creation language coined by President Barack Obama.

Rather than Texas policies that seem to disproportionately create minimum wage jobs, Maryland has chosen to focus on “building an economy from the middle out,” O’Malley said, via things like improving education.

2016 watch: O'Malley New Hampshire bound

O’Malley, a Democrat, told Perry that Texas is “not an economy that is actually lifting up the middle class.”

The two came at their different positions with radically different statistics and perspectives.

O’Malley spoke of talent creation and entrepreneurship encouraged in Maryland while Perry trumpeted improving education standards and the various options Texans have for healthcare, although he didn’t elaborate.

Texas and Maryland have also taken polar opposite views on the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, Obama’s signature legislative achievement better known as Obamacare.

O’Malley has continued to hold up Maryland’s early adoption of Obamacare while Perry has refused federal money to expand Medicaid via the healthcare law.

Perry argued that expanding Medicaid and embracing Obamacare would ultimately end up costing Texas $100 billion.

Putting “tens of thousands of people on a system that is broken,” Perry said of adding them to Medicaid, is akin to “putting tens of thousands on the Titanic knowing how it’s going to turn out.”

In turn, O’Malley argued that the flexibility of the Obamacare healthcare exchanges that get underway next month, regardless of the inevitable hiccups in the system, will offer Maryland workers a competitive advantage – allowing them to move from job to job without worrying about losing their health insurance.


Filed under: Health care • Martin O'Malley • Rick Perry
soundoff (371 Responses)
  1. Herman Kirwin

    LoranceW

    Perry is not the sharpest tool in the shed. I should know. I live in Texas. I witness his ineptitude all the time. The ACA has helped lower our health care cost by almost half so far. It think it is the best thing since apple pie. If anything let us hope we can convert this all to a single payer system, i.e., medicare for all.
    =========================================

    So why do you still live in Texas? I didn't like or agree with O'Mally and move to Virginia. If you don't like Texas or the Governor then staying there isn't very bright.

    September 19, 2013 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  2. Duh Libruhl's

    The comments here show clearly just how stupid Americans have become.... HINT: There is no difference between republicans or democrat's.... They BOTH support the notion that American's should pay trillions to entities that DO NOT PROVIDE HEALTHCARE!!!!! Not one healthcare insurance corporation in America PROVIDES health care... They are "healthcare pimps" supported by both corporate owned parties.

    There is no longer a difference between government and corporation in America, and therein lies the ruse as well as the definition of what has happened to the American people.... Divided and conquered by corporate America.

    September 19, 2013 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  3. Herman Kirwin

    nc1965 wrote:

    Prior to Medicare, “about one-half of America’s seniors did not have hospital insurance,” “more than one in four elderly were estimated to go without medical care due to cost concerns,” and one in three seniors were living in poverty. Today, nearly all seniors have access to affordable health care and only about 14 percent of seniors are below the poverty line.
    --------–
    And just like unemployment, the numbers were significantly worse among minority communities because jobs that paid a living wage were so few and far between for minorities.
    ================================================

    ....and high unemployment and part time jobs will be better how? will 29 hr work week work for you?

    September 19, 2013 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  4. RandyB

    Rick Perry should never debate again after his last presidential run...he is about 5 short of a 6-pack! He is bound and determined to make Affordable Care fail in Texas and is doing a great job at that. I am still mad that he blocked Tesla from selling cars in Texas while touting himself a proponent of free capitalism.

    September 19, 2013 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  5. Randy

    If the insurance programs set up under exchanges are so great, why did Congress exempt themselves from the law?

    September 19, 2013 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  6. Herman Kirwin

    Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Perry has been sucking on the government breast for years, but doesn't want anyone else to get a taste. Typical Republican hypocrite. Vote them all out!
    ============================

    LOL....and you got rid of your Democrat Governor why?

    September 19, 2013 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  7. Also

    Obama is going to make it to were after a certain age, lets say 70, (generally older) will be cut back from certain medical treatments. My grandparents are STILL people , no matter the age they still need the proper health care. its just Evil. and if he really cared for the american people like he says he does, he wouldnt have a policy like that.. In my mind he is just letting us die off, one by one. Literaly. Come on MR. President be our protector, not our dictator.

    September 19, 2013 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  8. Stephen

    It does not surprise me most comment are liberal-minded as are most CNN audiences. It also does not surprise me liberals will never hesitate to try to define another human so as to suit their perception. That defies logic.

    No doubt the health care system needs fixed, but the government is NOT capable. LOOK AT THE GOVERNMENT! It's broken too.

    Proper regulation of insurance and health care providers, and HMO's is where the answer is. No one should be forced to pay another persons bill. Ever!

    September 19, 2013 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  9. Hogan's Goat

    Well, the countdown is on. As soon as Obamacare(thanks for the name, haters!) begins, it will be as beloved as Social Security and Medicare. Anyone against it will be kicked to the curb fast. Grover Norquist won't be able to find an anti-Obamacare candidate. So all you loons get a few last forlorn cries in before the sun goes down on your era.

    September 19, 2013 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  10. Herman Kirwin

    farside6262

    I wish the bashers of "Obamacare" knew what they were talking about. Even though my "pre-existing condition" is cured- 7 years and counting, the insurance companies are not required to recognize that it is indeed deemed curable by the medical community (Hep C, via blood transfusion) and persist in charging me $650/mo. with a $5000 deductible. As a self-employed contractor, I can't afford that, could you?
    Thanks to the president's plan, I can get the same coverage for $240/mo. with a $1000 deductible. YES, note that I AM PAYING for it! I am thrilled at the opportunity to have affordable care and more than happy to pay my fair share! This government plan, called PCIP, will phase out at the end of this year and those of us with "pre-existing conditions" will then be able to PURCHASE health care through any insurance company we choose since all companies will be forced to provide affordable care to us. You don't want health care? Not only is that irresponsible, but don't tell me I cannot have it! I've seen far too many instances of entire families being financially wiped out by one devastating diagnosis.
    ====================================

    maybe you should of thought about that before your needle work. By the way, I'm subsidizing your insurance and bad decisions.

    September 19, 2013 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  11. John

    Obama care is working that is the GOP's greatest fear. Just like Medicare and Social security that the GOP said would destroy the U.S. of America man years ago. No one believes the big GOP lie anymore.

    September 19, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  12. Tim W

    If Gov. Perry recieves the 2016 Republican nomination, the party can forget about the White House for at least three election cycles.

    September 19, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  13. Jake

    Obamacare is like the Titanic in that it was a modern marvel of a ship which could carry a lot of folks accross an ocean instead of a yacht that can only carry the very few who can afford it. What Perry and the GOP are really saying when they compare Obamacare to the Titanic is that they'd like the outcome of Obamacare to be the same as that of the Titanic in history (that's where Republicans live...in the past). Imagine if you had the Titanic today, would you steer it in the same waters knowing that's where it would meet it's doom? Imagine if the Titanic actually made it accross the ocean...it's history would be totally different, wouldn't it? Well, the GOP being the Republicans that they are cannot imagine a world where a Titanic can be successful, their only modification to the Titanic would've been to remove all the life rafts and then steer it right into icebergs, so it can be damanged and sunk while allowing everyone in it to die. Then they can all line up on Fox News proclaiming some validatation to their claim that the ship (Obamacare) was a failure.

    September 19, 2013 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  14. Houston

    I live in Houston and every day I see more and more out of state license plates mostly from California, NY, and Michigan. The economy is thriving in our state due to low taxes and less cumbersome government regulations. It is not simply the oil industry running our state but top medical industry (without Obamacare)..Biden's own son just came here for treatment, our ports, and one of the hottest residential and commercial real estate markets in the country. You can say all you want about Perry being a dumbo but our government policies are a key indicator in making our state have an unemployment rate well below the nation's average and why companies from all over want to move here. Its common sense...would you rather start a business in our state or the government debacle of Michigan and California.

    September 19, 2013 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  15. Jake

    Remember when Republicans resisted Medicare? Now they defend it...as an argument against Obamacare. Republicans live in history...that's whey they never learn from it.

    September 19, 2013 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  16. Lynda/Minnesota

    Interesting comments coming from the rightwing. Especially against a program that is yet to be fully implemented. Yeah, I know. The Brothers-Koch got their money's worth out of these folks.

    I'd condemn Calgary Cruz but the fact is he is only interested in Obamacare as a fund raising tool. That he wants to take down the Grand Old Party speaks volumes for Mr. Cruz. Well, Mr. Perry also. Each are more than willing to beat this drum until the well runs dry.

    I am OK with both these men using the Grand Old Party as nothing more than a personal fundraiser. This is about all that is left of the once powerful Grand Old Party. Fundraising for TeaPers.

    September 19, 2013 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  17. Alan L

    Someone needs to explain to the Republicans and to Fox News, that the name of Obama's health care plan is NOT "Obamacare." It's called the Affordable Care Act, and it's purpose is to make health care affordable to those who can't afford the high costs of regular health insurance. Obamacare is a name the Republicans gave the plan, to make it sound like something bad.

    The Republicans are trying the same scare tactics toward the ACA, as they did back in the early 1960s when they tried to sink the implementation of Medicare. Try doing a search with the words, "Who was against Medicare," and "Reagan speech against Medicare," and you'll see the deceit the Republicans used in their defense of the big business health care insurance companies. You'll see where the loyalty of the Republican party really is.

    September 19, 2013 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  18. Steve

    Hey Houston. You are out of touch. California with Brown now has balanced its budget. Texas is a very repressive state and sadly always will be.

    September 19, 2013 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  19. chris

    Governor, you and your ideological cohorts are then bitterly cold frosty waters that terrified me as the frozen dead people bobbed up and down as eternal icecycles....

    September 19, 2013 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  20. Marco

    A better analogy would be: Obamacare is like an iceberg and the US is like the Titanic.

    September 19, 2013 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  21. Hector Slagg

    Some of you may want to Re-visit the Aesop's Fable of the Goose that Laid the Golden Egg. There are better ways to have Health Care for the Un=Insured. The practical side is "Obama Care is killing jobs so paying for Obama Care will be by raising the National Debt, Taxing Big Business more, etc. With less and less Taxes paid the result will be like going down with the Titanic.

    September 19, 2013 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  22. ghostwriter

    Did Perry actually talk about his balanced budget that he balanced by using stimulus funds?

    September 19, 2013 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  23. Rudy NYC

    Herman Kirwin wrote:

    maybe you should of thought about that before your needle work. By the way, I'm subsidizing your insurance and bad decisions.
    ---------------------
    You were subsidizing the cost of other people's health care before the law was passed anyway. You should have thought of that before you began listening to the politicians and pundits bashing Obamacare... .... who are in full panic mode right now, not because the law being enacted will destroy the economy, but because the law being enacted will destroy the framework of lies and the false narrative that they've created.

    Did you know that the "death panel" the right wing points to is actually a committee comprised of two dozen people. The right wing tells you that this small group is to make "pay or no pay" helath care decisions for millions of people on a daily basis, which is too absurd to even be called absurd.

    What the group actually does is report to the Congress. Look at it as a complaint board. They examine cases, looking for both the good things and the bad things, and makes reports and recommendations to the Congress. That is the only power that these so-called "death panels" actually have, which is technically none.

    September 19, 2013 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  24. Thomas

    @Houston
    I live in Houston and every day I see more and more out of state license plates mostly from California, NY, and Michigan. The economy is thriving in our state due to low taxes and less cumbersome government regulations. It is not simply the oil industry running our state but top medical industry (without Obamacare)..Biden's own son just came here for treatment, our ports, and one of the hottest residential and commercial real estate markets in the country. You can say all you want about Perry being a dumbo but our government policies are a key indicator in making our state have an unemployment rate well below the nation's average and why companies from all over want to move here. Its common sense...would you rather start a business in our state or the government debacle of Michigan and California.

    =======
    Mitt Romney didn't move to Texas ! Texas is a cheep place to live , as for Rick Perry , he makes GW Bush look like Albert Einstein.

    September 19, 2013 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  25. Gerry Cates

    Texas Economic Boom is called OIL or "awhl" down here. I have nothing to do with the oli business other than filling up my car but I would advise other States in the Union to find you some oil. Every drop we find here or in Canada and Mexico means less imports from the Middle East.
    Texas is known for hunting and fresh water/salt water fishing. Oil production and the environment do just fine side by side. If you do not believe that just hire you a Gulf of Mexico Fishing Guide and he will take you out to the OFF SHORE OIL RIGS where the fishing is excellent.

    September 19, 2013 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
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