U.S. Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, said Democrats are working to create a “dependency class” in America in an effort to expand their political base and stay in power.
“That’s part of the motive,” King said when discussing federal health-care reform efforts with reporters after a Tuesday taping of Iowa Public Television’s “Iowa Press.”
King, who represents Iowa’s 5th District, said he will do what he can to try stop a health-care bill from heading to President Barack Obama’s desk, and he urged others who opposed the bill to join him.
He said Democrats are moving toward nation health care, whether a public insurance option is included in the final bill or not.
“That’s the goal; that’s the endeavor,” King said. “They’ll regulate everything, and when they do that, we will lose the liberty we have today to buy health insurance policies.”
He predicted that if Congress passes health-care reform, Democrats will pay a price at the ballot box in 2010.
“I’ve never seen this kind of energy in America, this kind of uprising, especially from the heart of the heartland of America,” King said.
King said he is worried about the “mindset” drifting into America that doesn’t seem to understand the free-enterprise system.
“We’re descendants in this part of the country from people who came across America in covered wagons,” King said. “I mean, they came here to live free or die on the prairie. They didn’t ask for a government handout.”?? ?
Norm Sterzenbach, executive director of the Iowa Democratic Party, called King’s comments hypocritical.
“Before he rails against Democrats for working to help seniors pay for prescriptions and help students afford college, he should consider giving up his government salary, as other members of Congress have,” Sterzenbach said.
King, a four-term congressman, said he plans to seek another term in 2010. Iowa is expected to lose one of its congressional seats, and King said he probably still will seek re-election in 2012 even if redistricting places him in the same district with another member of Congress.
As Iowa Republicans look to unseat Gov. Chet Culver next year, King said he did not know whether he would endorse one of the candidates in the GOP primary.
“I’d like to see them fight this out, because it tests their vigor, and it tests their ability, and it also shapes the policy for Republicans that will be matched up against the policy that’s been set by Gov. Culver,” King said.
The “Iowa Press”? featuring King is scheduled to air at 7:30 p.m. Friday and noon Sunday on Iowa Public Television.
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