Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann says that the U.S. should be more like China and do away with Great Society programs like Medicare and Medicaid. At a debate with seven other Republican candidates in South Carolina Saturday night, National Journal‘s Major Garrett asked Bachmann what programs she would eliminate as president.
“The ‘Great Society’ has not worked and it’s put us into the modern welfare state,” she explained, referring to a set of domestic programs put in place by President Lyndon B. Johnson. They included the Civil Rights Act, the War on Poverty, federal aid to public education, Medicare, Medicaid, the National Endowment for the Arts, public broadcasting, the Department of Transportation, various consumer protection agencies and environmental protections.
Bachmann added: “If you look at China, they don’t have food stamps. If you look at China, they’re in a very different situation. They save for their own retirement security… They don’t have the modern welfare state and China’s growing. And so what I would do is look at the programs that LBJ gave us with the Great Society and they’d be gone.”
With this statement, the candidate seemed to contradict her own website.
“As President, she will ensure that any reform to Social Security or Medicare will only affect those 55 and younger, and she will work to find a way to ease the next generation into a program that is solvent, fiscally responsible, and empowering to the individual,” the website says. “Michele has also pledged to protect Medicare by repealing Obamacare.”