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Chuck Schumer's Illogical Charge of Health Care Hypocrisy

1:15 PM, Jan 4, 2011 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
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If there's one thing more annoying than hypocrisy, it's illogical accusations of hypocrisy (e.g. for some reason, those who want freedom to save for their own retirement as they see fit and oppose Social Security in principle should not accept Social Security benefits after they've already paid into the system). The latest such example comes from Senator Chuck Schumer (D, N.Y.), who says Republicans should not accept health care, since they want to repeal Obamacare. Ben Smith reports:

"It was a central value to us when we passed health care, and a central value to the American people, that members of Congress should get the same health care as everyone else," Schumer told POLITICO this morning. "It seems unfair that house Republicans want to deprive middle-class Americans of the same health care as members of Congress but to keep it for themselves."

"Will Eric Cantor urge every Republican who is going to be for repeal to not take government health care themselves and to drop their existing health care?" he asked.

The logical fallacy here is that Republicans never said that government employees--which is what U.S. congressmen and senators are--should not receive health care coverage from their employer. What Republicans did was oppose a law that raised taxes and cut Medicare by $2 trillion in order to pay for an entitlement program that greatly increases government control of health care. (They favored and favor a variety of free market reforms.) The fact that many Democrats and a few Republicans do not understand this distinction does not mean all Republicans are hypocrites.

And while Schumer is busy criticizing Republicans for not practicing what they preach, why doesn't he send his portion of the Bush tax cuts back to the U.S. Treasury? Or, at the very least, could he explain why keeping his portion of the Bush tax cuts isn't hypocrisy?

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