Republican senator tells former Canadian public health minister that her country has a ‘parasitic relationship’ with the US.
Bob Corker, a Republican senator from Tennessee, insulted a former Canadian Public Health Minister by telling her that her country, which has universal health care, has a “parasitic relationship” with the United States because of its supposedly inferior health care technology:
During a hearing of the Special Committee on Aging, the Tennessee Republican told Canada’s former Public Health Minister, Dr. Carolyn Bennett, that her country is “living off of us” because they set lower prices for health care and “all the innovation, all the technology breakthroughs just about take place in our country and we have to pay for it.”
“It is not really our country so much is the problem, it’s sort of the parasitic relationship that Canada, and France, and other countries have towards us,” Corker said. “…You benefit from us, and we pay for that. And I resent that, and I want to figure out a way to solve that.”
Think Progress blogger Zaid Jilani notes:
Although attacking the Canadian and European health care systems is a common tactic for conservatives, the fact remains that these countries have been leading health care innovators time and time again.
Canada brought the world insulin, developed bone marrow transplantation, and conducts more lung transplant surgeries than the United States. Meanwhile, of the twenty most profitable pharmaceutical manufacturers, only nine are from the United States — the rest are from western Europe, Japan, and Israel, all of which have universal health care systems that Corker so is opposed to.