Newt Gingrich photo

Remarks in Derry, New Hampshire

May 25, 2011

Thank you for joining me here today.

The Derry Medical Center is a perfect place to discuss jobs, energy, the economy and healthcare.

The Derry News wrote

"...the Derry Medical Center, a family practice founded 47 years ago by a Scottish doctor looking to escape a volume-based, nationalized health care system. 'Things have changed tremendously over the years and now we sort of micromanage people's lives, but we're doing a lot more for chronic disease identification and management,' said Dr. Ted Brooks, a physician at the Derry center. 'We are very concerned that that's being directly threatened by what is essentially a national health care system that we don't have any control over.'"

There could be no better place to discuss the difference between locally led, doctor-patient health and healthcare and the Obamacare Washington based bureaucratic control of our lives.

It is one thing to have a lot of personal health decisions decided locally by you, your doctor, and your pharmacist.

It is a very different and very dangerous system if those decisions are made by a Washington bureaucrat who doesn't know you, has never seen your personal health record, and doesn't even have a medical degree.

There are many outstanding examples of "localism" providing better health solutions. At the Center for Health Transformation we have spent years finding great solutions at a personal, doctor and local community level.

Grand Rapids Michigan has a very effective local solution in the Spectrum Health system.

As Rich Devos, the founder of Amway said, "Grand Rapids is proof health can be solved locally when it can not be solved in Washington.”

Similarly, the Gunderson-Lutheran system in Lacrosse, Wisconsin has a very effective end of life care program which brings patients, families and doctors together in a caring, sensitive and personal process.

No Washington bureaucracy can do that.

Today we have reached a moment of crisis in America. More Americans are without jobs, and for longer periods of time, than at any time in our history since the Great Depression. In 2010, more people depended on assistance from government programs than at any other time in America's history.

Solving this crisis of unemployment and a growing and destructive dependence on government will require the commitment, perseverance, and hard work -- not of any one man or woman -- but of Americans from every walk of life who are united by a belief in freedom and self-government.

In every arena in which Washington has overstepped its constitutional boundaries or grown too large and ineffective, we must reassert the principle that WE THE PEOPLE are the source of authority, power, wealth, and freedom in American society. To restore that relationship between the government and the governed, we must move power out of Washington and return it to the American people.

The 10th amendment is the Constitution’s reset mechanism and in the course of this campaign I will demonstrate why a return of power to the states and to the people based on the 10th Amendment is so urgently needed today.

This means rejecting a government of We the Bureaucrats and replacing it with a government of, by, and for the American people.

The choice between a Washington based Obamacare and a Tenth Amendment development of localism could not be clearer.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (also known as Obamacare) is unconstitutional, unaffordable, unworkable, and stunningly unfair.

ObamaCare’s so-called "individual mandate" is a blatantly unconstitutional and unprecedented expansion of federal power.

If the federal government can coerce individuals—by threat of fines—to buy health insurance, there is no stopping the federal government from forcing Americans to buy any good or service.

If the Supreme Court finds such coercion to be constitutional, it would mean the judicial branch has given up on limited constitutional, government. It would mean that the judges believe there is no constitutional barrier to protect the individual against the absolute and arbitrary power of the state.

That’s why I have publicly supported the efforts of Attorney General Cuccinelli of Virginia in his lawsuit and the 26 attorneys-general throughout the country who have challenged the constitutionality of Obamacare. It’s also why I became the first presidential candidate to sign the Independent Women’s Voice “Obamacare Repeal Pledge” last week in Iowa.

And it is why I will fight for the repeal of Obamacare until it is repealed in its entirety.

Obamacare is not only unconstitutional; its design is insulting to the vision of the Founders who carefully created a government of enumerated and limited powers, not a government of unlimited and open-ended powers.

The law creates one thousand, nine hundred and sixty eight separate grants of power to bureaucrats, most of them to the Secretary of Health and Human Services and her bureaucracy. It creates 159 new boards, agencies and other government entities to administer health decisions that should be up to the individual in consultation with their doctor.

This unprecedented grant of discretionary power to unelected bureaucrats guarantees the rise in arbitrary and corrupted decision-making by the federal government.

Indeed, we are already seeing how the American belief in the rule of law is betrayed in the implementation of Obamacare.

To date, the Obama Administration has issued over one thousand waivers to exempt companies and organizations from complying with the law's expensive mandates, including Big Labor and other powerful supporters of the Democratic Party.

Last week, a report emerged that showed nearly 20% of the latest round of waivers are in former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s congressional district.

This process provides glaring proof of the corrupting nature of big government and why our Founders distrusted centralized power.

The American people will not stand for such a corrupting, unconstitutional state of affairs.

Obamacare will be repealed, as will similar programs in the states. In addition to the unconstitutional nature of individual and employer mandates, we are learning that they simply don’t work.

Their intractable problem is this: once you have a mandate, the government has to specify exactly what coverage must be included in insurance for it to qualify. This introduces political considerations into determining these minimum standards, guaranteeing that nothing desired by the special interests will be left out.

And once the government mandates such expensive insurance, the government becomes responsible for its costs. It has to adopt expensive subsidies to help people pay for the expensive plans that it is requiring. The resulting cost to the taxpayer and strain on the budget leads the government to try and control healthcare costs by limiting health care services. The inevitable result is rationing by a nameless, faceless, unaccountable board of government bureaucrats.

This has been the sad, unworkable path now being followed Governor Duval Patrick in Massachusetts and it is now the same sad unworkable path unfolding in Washington.

We must either limit government or we will have government limit us.

As I carry the banner in fighting for the repeal of Obamacare, I will advocate for specific replacement health policies that will create a free market framework for healthcare, provide affordable, portable, and reliable healthcare coverage, and establish a health care safety net focused on those in need. This system will assure health care for all with no individual mandate or employer mandate of any kind.

This alternative to Obamacare begins with patient power and localism.

Instead of an individual mandate penalty for not buying government approved health insurance, the federal tax code should be reformed to provide every American the choice of a generous tax credit or the ability to deduct the value of their health insurance up to a certain amount. The federal tax code should provide the same tax relief for the individual buying his own insurance as the employer providing health insurance to its employees.

This will lower costs for individuals and families, and will make it easier for people to obtain portable insurance they can with them from job to job. If you don’t like your employer’s insurance, you get the same tax relief if you buy the insurance of your choice. Employers should also be allowed to buy individually owned insurance for their employees, instead of non-portable, group insurance.

This approach provides a foundation of equal fairness for all, rather than the favoritism and rank discrimination of the Obamacare bureaucracies and the current system.

We should extend Health Savings Accounts throughout the health care system. Everyone on Medicare should be free to choose an HSA as part of their coverage if they want it. Everyone on Medicaid should be free to choose an HSA for part of their coverage. All workers should be free to use their health insurance tax credit or deduction to choose an HSA in place of their employer provided health insurance if they desire.

These are a few examples of reforms that we can enact, once Obamacare is repealed, that will transform our current healthcare system into one centered on the individual, where patients and doctors have power, not Washington bureaucrats.

The second step in reestablishing the constitutional relationship between government and we the people is putting Americans back to work. It starts with a simple organizing principle: Job killing policies kill jobs. We must identify job-killing policies, and then end them or replace them with job creating policies.

America has faced recessions before and recovered quickly. Since World War II, recessions have lasted an average of 10 months. The longest was 16 months. But today, forty months after the recession began, unemployment is actually going back up – to 9% last month. Worse, if you count those who have stopped looking for a job or are working part time when they would prefer to work full time, the real unemployment rate is at a staggering 16%.

Historically, the worse the economic downturn, the stronger is the recovery. Based on previous history, America should be enjoying the second year of a roaring economic recovery by now. Instead, while the Reagan recovery averaged 7.1% economic growth over the first 7 quarters, the current so-called recovery has produced less than half that at 2.8%, with the last quarter at a dismal 1.8%.

The normal resiliency of the American economy is being held back by the destructive impact of big government. Instead of trying to create jobs with wasteful stimulus spending, we need a government that gets out of the way and allows the American people to create jobs and prosperity again.

That starts with cutting taxes and cutting spending.

We should continue what has worked by making the current tax rates permanent, stopping the 2013 tax increases, and by repealing Obamacare and its tax increases.

Next we must make America once again the most desirable country in the world for job creating investment. To do this we need a bold series of four tax cuts.

We should eliminate the capital gains tax, as many of our international competitors have done, to make American entrepreneurs more competitive and to attract billions of new investments.

We should reduce America’s corporate tax rate, now the highest in the industrialized world, to 12.5%.

We should allow for 100% expensing of investment in new equipment, allowing farmers, factories, doctors, hospitals and all businesses to write off all new equipment in one year. This will ensure that American workers can once again employ the most technologically advanced tools in the most advanced factories and be the most productive in the world.

We should permanently end the death tax and its double taxation on the lifetime savings of Americans.

We also need several pro-growth regulatory reforms that remove obstacles to job creation.

We should repeal the costly, ineffective, and job killing Sarbanes Oxley Act.

We should replace the job killing EPA with an Environmental Solutions Agency.

Finally, we need an American energy policy that favors cheap gasoline, cheap diesel fuel, cheap natural gas, and cheap electricity.

Cheap American energy will lead to more jobs, greater economic growth, and wealthier Americans.

This would seem to be an all too obvious goal for the country, except for the fact that the Obama administration pursues explicit policies that lead to expensive gasoline, expensive diesel, expensive natural gas, and skyrocketing electricity costs. These anti-American energy policies are killing jobs and making us all poorer.

We need an all-out effort to increase domestic oil and drilling, including the development of oil shale resources in the American West, where we have an estimated three times as much oil as Saudi Arabia.

We don’t have to wait years for gas prices to come down. An aggressive commitment now to develop more of our abundant oil and natural gas resources will put downward pressure on prices at the pump long before any new reserves actually come online. That’s not wishful thinking. That’s called the law of supply and demand, which takes into account today what’s going to happen in the future.

The combination of pro-growth tax reforms, controlled spending, a return to sound money and an American energy plan will lead to strong economic growth, a dramatic decline in unemployment, and low inflation.

The return to prosperity and the reestablishment of the proper constitutional balance between government and the governed will not be an easy task. But protecting our freedoms has never been easy.

The election of 2012 is the most important election of our lifetime.

Down the left hand road lies a Washington bureaucracy running our lives in a corrupt system defined by politicians.

Down our road lies the rebirth of freedom, the reassertion of the Constitution and the renewal of the American economy.

I am running for President to change Washington decisively, reinforce obedience to the Constitution and reestablish the core principles of the Declaration of Independence.

This campaign will require a team effort, with every American who believes as I do that the future of American liberty requires a recommitment to the timeless principles of our country’s founding:

That every man, woman, and child is endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights.

That among these rights are the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

And that government derives its only just authority from the consent of the governed: from We the People.

And since we truly believe that every American is endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights –– then we must be determined to go into our country’s poorest communities, whether it is in the valley, the inner city, or poor, rural areas. We must change the culture; we must change the bureaucracy; we must change the tax code; we must change the law, we must do whatever it takes to ensure that every American is truly capable of pursuing happiness, as they have been endowed by their Creator with that right.

And when we show that we are truly serious about all American citizens having the right to pursue happiness, we will create such an overwhelming majority, we will be able to offer our children and grandchildren a vastly better future than the bureaucratic welfare state of dependency, coercion, and ineffectiveness we face today.

Thank you.

Newt Gingrich, Remarks in Derry, New Hampshire Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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