OK, Mr. and Ms. America, how well do you know your Republican quotes? Can you identify which Republican said what, when, and on what issue? Here’s a little quiz for you to test your knowledge of Republican statements on a variety of issues. Just read the statement, and pick your answer from the choices given. Correct answers are at the bottom.
1) “There is nothing profamily about putting people out of work–but that is exactly what this bill does. Estimates are that tens of thousands of working men and women will be put out of work if this bill passes….there is nothing democratic about Congress playing Big Brother and mandating one set of benefits over another.”
a. Rep. Rodney Grams, on the Family Medical Leave Act, 1993
b. Speaker John Boehner, on the Affordable Care Act, 2010
c. Senator Lindsey Graham, on the Affordable Care Act, 2011
2) “It is socialism. It moves the country in a direction which is not good for anyone, whether they be young or old. It charts a course from which there will be no turning back.”
a. Senator Ted Cruz, on the Affordable Care Act, 2014
b. Representative Louie Gohmert, on President Obama’s executive orders regarding immigration, 2014
c. Senator Carl Curtis, on Medicare, 1965
3) “As reprehensible as child labor is, and as much as it ought to be abandoned — that’s something that has to be done by state legislators, not by Members of Congress. This may sound harsh, but it was designed to be that way. It was designed to be a little bit harsh.”
a. Senator Mike Lee, on child labor laws, 2008
b. Senator Joe McCarthy, on child labor laws, 1952
c. Representative Owen Brewster, on child labor laws, 1939
4) “Under these inflationary pressures many of the industries and small businesses employing marginally trained or unskilled workers will be forced to cut back on the number of those employees or go out of business. The very worker that the Federal minimum wage was intended to aid will find himself out of work.”
a. Senator Mitch McConnell, on increasing the minimum wage, 2013
b. Representative Mickey Edwards, on increasing the minimum wage, 1977
c. Senator Jesse Helms, on increasing the minimum wage, 1986
5) “The actual fact will be, in almost every case, that the whole tax will be borne either by the employe [sic] or by the consumer through higher prices. That is the history of all such taxes. This is because the tax is imposed in such a way that, if the employer is to stay in business, he must shift the tax to some one else.”
a. Representative Eric Cantor, on the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate, 2011
b. Senator Ron Johnson, on “cap and trade” carbon limits, 2012
c. Governor Alf Landon, on Social Security, 1936
And now, the answers:
1) a. Representative Rodney Grams made that comment, on February 2, 1993. He was talking about the Family Medical Leave Act.
2) c. That remark came from Nebraska Senator Carl Curtis, in 1965, in reference to Medicare.
3) a. Yes, Republicans were still speaking up against child labor laws in the 21st century. Senator Mike Lee said that, on January 14, 2011.
4) b. This statement was made by Oklahoma representative Edwards. He said that in April 1977.
5) c. Republicans have always hated Social Security. This is one of many statements about it made by Republican presidential candidate Alf Landon in 1936.
So, how did you do?
Unless you are a total political junkie, you probably couldn’t tell the statements made by today’s Republicans from ones that were made by Republicans 20, 50, or 100 years ago. and it’s no wonder. No matter what is being discussed, Republicans always say the same things:
- “It will kill jobs, and increase unemployment.”
- “It is communistic/socialistic.”
- “It will destroy the family.”
- “The states should handle it, not the federal government.”
- “It costs too much money!”
You might think that by now, the public would be tired of hearing the same things from different mouths, but, the political memory of the average American is pretty short, and as a result, too many people keep falling for the same old lines.
Perhaps the most important thing to remember about things that Republicans say, is that their predictions almost never come true. The GOP will keep saying the same things, though, because all they have to offer is opposition. They have stood in the way of everything from a higher minimum wage, to Medicare. Over the last 100 years, there has not been a single piece of legislation created by Republicans, that exclusively benefits poor and middle class Americans. So, how do they manage to keep winning elections? It’s simple: Divide (gay marriage!) and (abortion!) conquer (BENGHAZI!).
(All quotes used in this article are taken from Cry Wolf Project, quite possibly the greatest repository of Republican quotes on the internet.)
Featured image via DonkeyHoetey/Flickr