Here I am, telling it like it is, talking about Social Security and Medicare and announcing my candidacy on national TV last night:
Ed Schultz: Let's bring in former congressman Alan Grayson, who has been a fighter for the left since he got on the national scene. Congressman, good to have you with us tonight. Alan Grayson, you have been a man known for unvarnished opinion. If you were in the Congress today, what would be your advice, how would you handle this?
Alan Grayson: I would not vote for any cuts in Medicare, I would not vote for any cuts in Social Security, and I'd be grabbing everybody else by the collar telling them to do the same.
Alan Grayson: Look, you know the Republicans have been saying now for months that we need to cut $2 trillion out of the budget over the next 10 years, without ever saying what they would cut. They got a free ride for the past two months or three months, talking about all these wonder cuts that are going to reduce the deficit, reduce the debt, without ever saying what they are. Now I know a way to cut $2 trillion out of the deficit in the next 10 years. You could end the wars. You could end the war in Afghanistan. You could end the war in Iraq and Libya. Those wars cost us $157 billion last year, and the cost is going up, not down. If you want to save $2 trillion, how about peace? Why don't we give that a try?
Schultz: Social Security is even a bigger deal, it seems like. Although Harry Reed was on "Meet the Press" I think a couple of months ago, said we didn't have a problem. But I guess now the president wants to put it on the table. The president has acknowledged it's not part of the deficit problem and I think that's starting to sink in with Americans. So if it is not the source of the problem, why the hell do we have to address it now? What do you think?
Grayson: Because Washington is now divided between the "Meanies" and the "Weenies." That's the real two-party system today in Washington, the Meanies and the Weenies. The Meanies want to take Social Security and Medicare away from Grandma and Grandpa, and the Weenies are quite willing to go along with it and "compromise." Well, people need Social Security and Medicare to live. And there is no compromise between life and death. There is no middle ground. The average person who retires in America today has less than $50,000 in savings. That's good for one, maybe two years. And those people live for close to 20. There is no way anybody in America can get by without Social Security and Medicare, and that's what the right wing in America wants to take away. I say, "No. No compromise." We need to strengthen Social Security and Medicare. I want to see Medicare cover dental work. I want to see Medicare cover hearing aids. I want to see Medicare cover actual medical needs.
Schultz: Is this President weak? Why isn't he saying what you're saying? Why does he throw $4 trillion out on the table, when he knows that's an unrealistic number? He's just trying to prove a point that the Republicans are never going to deal with him. Hell, anybody could have told him that last week.
Grayson: He's my President. He's the leader of my party. So I don't know exactly what to say. But I do know this. All of this compromise hasn't accomplished anything useful for anybody on our side. It hasn't done any good at all. The President should be saying to people: "The Republican Party is cruel."
Grayson: "The Republican Party is bigoted. The Republican Party cares only about tax breaks for the rich." If that were the case...
Schultz: Congressman, there are a lot of people that need your voice. Are you ever going to get back into this race, back into this political arena?
Grayson: Ed, I announced today that I am running for Congress again. And already at our website "congressmanwithguts.com," hundreds of people have made a contribution. So yes,I'm back.
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