Feb 8, 2020

Transcript: Pete Buttigieg Speaks at New Hampshire Rally with Michael J. Fox

Pete Buttigieg New Hampshire Rally Transcript
RevBlogTranscriptsSpeech TranscriptsTranscript: Pete Buttigieg Speaks at New Hampshire Rally with Michael J. Fox

Campaigning for the New Hampshire primary, Pete Buttigieg held a rally in Keene, New Hampshire on February 8, 2020. Michael J. Fox also spoke at the rally in support of Buttigieg.

Michael J. Fox: (00:11)
Well, thank you very much. That’s cool. That’s cool. [crosstalk 00:00:30]. Pete Buttigieg is fantastic. I was watching the debate last night and it occurred to me I love all the Democratic nominees and I think they’re all terrific and I have respect for all of them, but they’re all yelling at me. I was sitting there and I said, “Why are you yelling at me, Bernie? What did I do to you?” I said, “They’re all screaming.” But Pete isn’t screaming. He’s just talking to me. He’s the one guy who’s just quiet and just making his point and it’s a point I agree with on almost all the issues. All issues. I can’t tell you one I don’t. I’ll just allow for the possibility that he might be, “You have to wear purple on Fridays,” or something. But I want to tell a story about the first time I saw… Well, the temperament and that idea that he can talk to you and not yell at you [inaudible 00:01:35].

Michael J. Fox: (01:33)
I mean, that’s the contrast we need to make to Trump to this insanity. He said something there, just saying, okay, whatever he just said, here’s the thing. I know Pete is capable of that. I believe he’s got the ability and temperament and the intelligence to get past this current divisive, dysfunctional politics. We’re going to new low to new low. I think he’ll rise us back up to where we need to be.

Michael J. Fox: (02:12)
I first noticed Pete on a morning show, one of the morning shows, and I just had my breakfast and watching the TV. Then this guy comes on, this young guy from Indiana running for president. I had never heard of him. The host of the show is just, I won’t say the name of the show, but they’ve had three hosts and one was [inaudible 00:02:37]. I watch every day. But they were kind of playing with him at first. I could tell they thought, who is this guy? And trying to answer this and then he would answer that and then they’d say, well how about this? And he would answer that. He’d do it very quickly. He was eating his lunch. He just had every answer but it wasn’t like it wrote. It was like he was saying it whether he said it a thousand times before, I believe that he was saying it for the first time and I believed he was saying it to me.

Michael J. Fox: (03:10)
That comes from a true place in him. He’s not trying to pull one over on me. He’s just trying to tell me the way he sees it. More times than not that that’s what I saw. We know the issues. I mean, climate change and obviously health care issues are important to me, these preexisting conditions. Because I have pre existing conditions.

Michael J. Fox: (03:43)
But I think this comes to me. From Indiana, a veteran, a road scholar. We have a very stable road scholar. Well better than genius. That’s right. That’s what I say the J stands for. But the story, so I saw him. I was so impressed with him. Where’s my phone? I called people afterwards. I said, “This guy. Just Google Mayor Pete.” Just see what comes up. And they come back and say, this guy sounds impressive.” I said, yeah, he’s amazing. Everybody I’ve told about him, now everybody knows him, but in those earlier days immediately became followers and supporters.

Michael J. Fox: (04:34)
It’s a quick digression, but 2006 I was campaigning for research freedom and for STEM cell research. I was traveling around with the midterm and I was supporting candidates that supported STEM cell research. I was in Chicago and I was supporting Tammy Duckworth. I was leaving and I was at the airport and there’s this guy standing by waiting for his car. He was kind of hidden away, like kind of around a corner smoking a cigarette, if I could tell the truth. It was the Senator from Illinois. It was Barack Obama and I met him. It was really honest. He was just started to make a splash and I talked to him and I was so impressed with him and I called my wife afterwards and I said, “I just met the next president of the United States.” I felt the same way when I saw Pete.

Michael J. Fox: (05:31)
I mean, working together we can not only get a lefthanded Maltese, American Episcopalian gay millennial war veteran be elected to the President of the United States, we also begin to tackle and quit talking about it, and just tackle challenges like rising healthcare costs to climate change and the gun violence epidemic so that children have a brighter future. It’s all about the future.

Michael J. Fox: (06:03)
I think it’s a real honor to be here today. It’s so great to see all of you and to be with Mayor Pete. I just want to introduce the next President of the United States. Pete Buttigieg.

Pete Buttigieg: (06:25)
Thank you so much. Thank you Congresswoman Annie Kuster for your support. We good? All right. All good? We’re good. We’re good. [inaudible 00:06:43]. Once again, thank you Congresswoman Annie Kuster for your support. You are lucky to have somebody representing you in New Hampshire, in Washington DC, a place where I know there’s so much frustration and exhaustion and even a sense of darkness sometimes when we turn on the news. But if you look at what Congresswoman Kuster and her colleagues are doing in the House to try to make sure that prescription drugs are affordable, to try to raise wages, to try to protect Americans from gun violence on issue after issue, they are there. Let us send them a president who will make sure that their work gets completed. One of our best conversations was about, not policy alone, but the qualities and the values that we cared about. She shared qualities and values that she had learned from her upbringing and talked a lot about courage and grace and how those two values mean so much as we’re trying to get things done together. When I think about courage and when I think about grace, I picture Michael J. Fox and I’m so honored to have you on our team.

Pete Buttigieg: (08:06)
I think about strength a lot too because there are some figures in our society right now who think that strength has to do with how loud you are, how hard you can thump your chest or putting other people down. I’m not here for the strength or so-called strength of the loud mouth guy at the end of the bar. I’m here for the strength of somebody like Michael J. Fox that others can look to and know that their struggle is something they can draw courage in and move forward. I’m so honored you’re here.

Pete Buttigieg: (08:56)
I’m so thankful that Jamie and the other members of our team, I know I’m very biased, but don’t we have the kindest, most energetic professional organizers and staff on this campaign? If you’ve had a chance to get to meet them, they’re just wonderful. They live out the values. We like to call them the rules of the road that are part of what makes this campaign what it is. The way that they are approaching people is such an important part of how we’ve been able to earn support and how we’re working to earn support right now in these last three days that bring us to the New Hampshire primary. I’m here one more time. If you are among those granite staters making up your mind, decision time, to ask you for your vote.

Pete Buttigieg: (09:42)
I know how seriously you take that responsibility and that influence that comes with being a New Hampshire voter. I’ve seen it. I saw it in the way that you would ask tough questions and kick the tires on every idea we put forward during the campaigning in the last year. I saw it when when we felt like we were really getting somewhere and in your New Hampshire way you’d say something to me in the late fall or winter like that was a really good presentation. You are now in my top five. Now we’re so excited to be here one more time in Keene to ask you for your vote.

Pete Buttigieg: (10:17)
I remember our first time turning up here, popping into Lindy’s, thrilled that we had a chance to meet literally a couple of dozen people and came to really admire the spirit of this community. Also want to share with you that since my last visit to Keene, I had the opportunity to visit the national cathedral with Jean Robinson, the former Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire. He took me to a place near the entrance of the cathedral where carved into stone is the figure of Jonathan Daniels, a Keene native who laid down his life in the Civil Rights movement.

Pete Buttigieg: (10:56)
I think it’s especially important to consider that example at a time like this in our country. Also as we acknowledge and honor Black History Month, which is about the contributions and the struggles of Black Americans, Black Americans who don’t need to be told or reminded the pain of living with systemic racism in this country. But it is also a time for those of us who have not had the lived experience of systemic racism and discrimination in the way that you do when you are African American in this country to ask of ourselves how we are making ourselves useful as allies. We can always do a better job listening. We can always show up. If Jonathan Daniels could lay down his life in that cause, surely every single American can make the cause of racial justice in this country our own.

Pete Buttigieg: (12:03)
My point is there’s a lot to draw on here in Keene by way of inspiration as we pull into these last days of this unbelievably consequential and important election. An election that I am convinced will define not just who is in the White House for the next four years, but what it’s like to be an American for the next 40. That’s what’s on the line. To think about what’s at stake and what we’ve got to do, I want to ask you to form in your mind the image that I always like to start out with that is the guiding image of this campaign in some ways. It’s the image that I’ll invite you to visualize of how it’s going to be that first time that the sun comes up-

Pete Buttigieg: (13:03)
… visualize of how it’s going to be that first time that the sun comes up over the mountains and lakes of New Hampshire and Donald Trump is no longer in the White House. It’s going to be a good day, right? Aren’t you ready to put that chaos behind us? Aren’t you ready to put the corruption behind us? How about putting the tweets behind us? I don’t even think that’s a partisan statement anymore.

Pete Buttigieg: (13:47)
Sure, I’ve got fellow die-hard Democrats who’ve been committed to making sure that that day comes, but also I’m seeing so many independents who feel equally strongly about bringing change to this country and I’m finding an awful lot of what I like to call the future former Republicans. I see a few acknowledging right here. We are glad that you are here and you are welcome to be at our side in this struggle. We may not agree on everything, but we can agree that the time has come to deliver this change before it is too late.

Pete Buttigieg: (14:27)
And that’s what this campaign is about. Because I am the candidate best prepared to defeat Donald Trump. Facing a fundamentally new challenge, a new political challenge, like running against him, I do not believe we can take the risk of falling back on the familiar. And in a divided time in our country, I also don’t think we can take the risk of excluding anybody from this effort, of saying that if you’re not either for a revolution or a status quo, then you don’t fit. I think we are going to defeat this president by inviting everybody to be at our side and get this done together.

Pete Buttigieg: (15:18)
But that majority we’re working to build is not just united around who we’re against, we’re even more united when it comes to what we’re for. There is a powerful American majority coming together today that can agree that we need to raise wages and empower workers in our economy. They can agree that part of how we honor our troops in uniform and in danger is to put an end to endless war and ensure they’re never asked to go, unless there is no alternative. And thanks to everybody here who served. Who can agree that we support our next generation by supporting our teachers and we ought to back them up with a Secretary of Education who believes in public education? On issue after issue, I’m seeing the majority come together that will not only make it possible to win the next election, but make it possible to govern on the road ahead, make it possible for us to actually deliver the changes that this country knows that we need, and that even though they command a majority among the American people, up until now can’t seem to get a majority in the American Senate. Now’s our chance to change that.

Pete Buttigieg: (16:54)
And the way we change that is to build a politics that insists on the idea that government and elections are not about the ups and downs in the polls. They’re not about who got the best zinger off in a debate. They’re not about who’ll look good on television. They’re about everyday life. That’s why even though I’m ready to go toe to toe with this president, you won’t see me talking about him that much because the less we’re talking about him, the more we can talk about you and about our everyday lives.

Pete Buttigieg: (17:29)
I believe every election is about the voter’s question, “How’s my life going to be different, my everyday life, if you’re president, instead of you.” That’s how I think about it. That’s how Chasten and I come to politics. Knowing that my mother-in-law’s struggle, his mother’s struggle, with cancer depends on the ability to get chemotherapy through insurance that she wouldn’t be able to get it all if it weren’t for the Affordable Care Act. Knowing that the course of my own life was changed by the orders that sent me to a foreign war, issued by a decision made in the White House. Knowing that my marriage, most important thing in my life, this ring on my finger, exists by the grace of a single vote on the United States Supreme Court. That’s what this election means to all of us, to each of us, in a different way. And it’s not even just about voters. Because so many of the most powerful voices I have encountered in this campaign are people not even yet old enough to vote. An 11-year-old who sticks up his hand at an event and asks me what we’re going to do so that he’ll be able to afford insulin in the future. He’s worried about this at the age of 11. And the only responsible answer is that we, anybody old enough to vote, is supposed to sort this out and take care of it and worry about it so you don’t have to. A 14-year-old who lets me know she’s written a will because she’s that afraid of what’ll happen to her at school. Shame on us if we don’t take care of that by the time she is old enough to vote.

Pete Buttigieg: (19:25)
A 10-year-old who came to an event and pointedly reminded me, and of course I like to think of myself as the youngster in this field, but pointed out that he was planning to be here in the year 2100 and will look back on the decisions we made in 2020 to decide whether the climate future for him and his kids and grandkids would be one where they could actually thrive, that this is the decision point that he will be looking back on, as so many of us will. That is who we are seeking to defend, to support, and to do right by. So that by the time they’re old enough to vote, certainly by the time they’re old enough to run for office, they’re worried about a whole other set of issues we can’t even think of because every election is about preparing for the future.

Pete Buttigieg: (20:13)
On that day of that sunrise I was talking about, America will be confronting challenges the likes of which weren’t even thought about just a few years ago, an economy transformed by gig work and technology, a climate this close to the point of no return, and oversees everything from global health security threats and pandemics to election security and cybersecurity challenges barely understood, let alone talked about by presidential candidates just a few years ago. That’s what we’re up against. But that is also why we now have the opportunity to look to the future and that is why there is not a decision to be made between what it takes to win big and what it takes to govern well. Both of those require the very same thing, which is a focus on the future and a readiness to turn the page.

Pete Buttigieg: (21:03)
In other words, the reason I’m doing this and the reason I’m asking for your support for this office is not that I got it into my head one day that I would like to occupy it. It’s about what the office is for. I’m here based on the idea that the presidency has a purpose and that the purpose of the presidency is not the glorification of the president, it’s the empowerment and the unification of the American people to deal with these big problems and face our future together. That’s what this is about and that’s why I’m asking for your support.

Pete Buttigieg: (21:48)
Now, our numbers at our events have grown a little bit since I first poked my head in at Lindy’s, but I still figured there’s no such thing as a room too big to have some kind of a conversation. So with help from Congresswoman Kuster and the famous fishbowl, we’ve gathered up questions from different folks on your way in, and I’ll do my best to be concise and respond to as many as I can. And if you hear yours, please give a wave and a holler so that I’m looking at you as we do.

Congresswoman Kuster: (22:11)
Okay. Mayor Pete, what will you do to strengthen Social Security and Medicare?

Pete Buttigieg: (22:20)
Great question. So let’s begin by correcting a couple of myths or problems in the way this is talked about. First of all, the word “entitlement.” We hear that a lot to describe Social Security and Medicare. Well, as a voter put it recently, I don’t know if this term will catch on, but I like it. He stood up and said, “I don’t think of it as an entitlement. I think of it as a paid-into-ment because I’ve been paying for it my whole working life.”

Pete Buttigieg: (22:50)
And so when we’re talking about Social Security and Medicare, we’re not talking about doing anybody a favor, we’re talking about keeping a promise that is made by every worker to the public. And that is why we have to make sure that it’s on good solid ground. Now there are some folks who say, “Well, we’re not going to be able to keep Social Security solvent unless we cut benefits.” But it isn’t true. It’s only true if we refuse to look at revenue. All we’ve got to do is raise the cap on income over $250,000 and allow that to pay into Social Security. We take that one step, that one step alone, and the Social Security trust fund will be in good shape, at least into the 2050s when I expect to be collecting. So I’ve got a bit of a personal stake in this. And we’ll be in a position to increase the generosity of the program too in certain important ways. I’ll give you one that I think is particularly important, caregiving for loved ones. Family caregiving is not considered work. Well, at least it’s not compensated as work. But it’s work, especially when it takes you out of the workforce in order to do it. And so even though you don’t get a W-2 for taking care of a loved one, I believe for the purposes of Social Security, a year spent as a family caregiver should count as a year in the working world.

Pete Buttigieg: (24:25)
Now, on Medicare, it’s a different set of challenges. There really is a fiscal challenge to keeping Medicare afloat. But again, it’s up to us to decide whether we can make the adjustments that are needed to make sure that it runs well. This is not about cuts. This is about making sure that we take common sense steps to get the finances right. And the biggest one, one so obvious to Americans of both parties that it’s astonishing that it hasn’t gotten done, but we can change it if we change Washington, is this. Medicare should be able to negotiate the cost of prescription drugs with prescription drug companies. You take that one step, it goes a huge way toward being able to shore up Medicare. Thanks for asking about those programs.

Congresswoman Kuster: (25:09)
Okay, from a young friend, this one, Anderson Kohler, age nine. “I like that…” Oh, right here. Thank you, Anderson.

Pete Buttigieg: (25:19)
Hi.

Congresswoman Kuster: (25:19)
What a good guy. Thank you for this. “I like that you say, ‘I think that kids shouldn’t have to have active shooter drills before they can read.’ Can you talk more about how you plan to help with this? Thank you.”

Pete Buttigieg: (25:44)
Well, Anderson, thanks for coming, first of all. I love your tie. Your question deserves a serious answer. And I want to begin with an apology on behalf of anybody old enough to vote because, like I was saying earlier, we’re supposed to take care of that sort of thing so that you can concentrate on being-

Pete Buttigieg: (26:03)
We’re supposed to take care of that sort of thing so that you can concentrate on being nigh. My promise is that we’re going to take steps to make sure that you don’t have to worry about these kinds of things when you’re going to school. You’ve got enough to deal with. What grade are you in? Third grade. Third grade is hard. You’ve got a lot of stuff to figure out.

Pete Buttigieg: (26:19)
I want to let you concentrate on third grade. Here’s some things we can do. First of all, we need to check the background of anybody who tries to buy a weapon. Now most Americans think we ought to do it, including most Republicans and most gun owners. Again, Annie Kuster and her colleagues in the House passed a bill to do it, but it keeps getting stuck in the Senate because we have a president who won’t take the step of pushing it through. We need to make sure that everybody gets their background checked and there are all these little loopholes and ways to sneak around it. We’ve got to put an end to that. That’s one.

Pete Buttigieg: (26:59)
Another is a kind of law called the Red Flag Law, and the idea is… Some folks know what that means. Imagine somebody waving a red flag because they know that there’s danger up ahead. That’s what it’s like. Only this time it’s not actually somebody waving a flag. It’s if somebody realizes that another person they know is potentially going to be dangerous to themselves or to others. Being able to take steps to make sure that they don’t have access to a weapon until that can get sorted out. The third thing that we’ve got to do is think about the kinds of weapons that are being sold in America. When I was in the military, I was responsible for learning how to use certain kinds of weapons that are designed for war, weapons anything like what I had to deal with in the military, have no place being sold anywhere near your school for profit. We’re going to actively make sure that doesn’t happen. Those are some of the steps we’ll take to keep you safe. Thanks for your question.

Congresswoman Kuster: (28:06)
Thank you, Anderson. My first presidential campaign rally, I was nine years old. So one day you’ll be up here. All right, Pete. A classic New Hampshire question. This one’s important to all of us. Even if folks in Washington have stopped paying attention. What’s your stand on the deficit?

Pete Buttigieg: (28:28)
Good. Again, if you want to… That’s probably a lot of folks here. I think the time has come for my party to get a lot more comfortable talking about the deficit. Because right now, we’ve got a president who comes from the party that used to talk a lot about fiscal responsibility with a trillion dollar deficit and no plan in sight for what to do about it. Yes, this should concern progressives who are not in the habit of talking or worrying too much about the debt and here’s why. Service on the debt is going to start crowding out investment in safety net and health and infrastructure and education programs that are important. That’s one.

Pete Buttigieg: (29:12)
Another is that we’re in an expansion right now. When we’re in a recession, you need enough room in the budget to be able to do the kind of stimulus that helps get us out of a recession. Not a lot of room left when you got a trillion dollar deficit already. The third concern, especially for a younger generation is the longer you’re planning to be here, the more likely you might be here when some of these fiscal time bombs start to go off. So we need to act to make sure that our country’s finances are under control.

Pete Buttigieg: (29:48)
That doesn’t have to be a knockdown argument against making big investments. I’m proposing big investments, but you’ll notice two things about my plans. One, I’m careful about what we promise. I think we ought to take a major step forward in healthcare in America, but I figured out a way to do it that costs one and a half trillion dollars over a decade. No small sum of money, but instead of 20 or 30 or 40 or some of my competition even saying you don’t deserve an explanation on how much it’s going to cost. It’s impossible to tell. No. We’ve got to make sure that we’re making promises we can keep.

Pete Buttigieg: (30:22)
Same thing with college. When it comes to college, we are going to make sure that cost is no longer a barrier. We’re going to enact a program that would cover actually all of your tuition for about 80% of Americans in public colleges. But if you’re in that top income bracket, I still wish you well. But I’m looking for you to go ahead and pay your own tuition because those tax dollars are so precious. Part of it’s on the side of spending.

Pete Buttigieg: (31:00)
I’ve put together a bold package that’s the most ambitious that we’ve seen from certainly relative to any nominee we’ve had recently, but it’s a manageable number. The other side is we can’t be afraid to talk about revenue. This is not about hitting the middle-class with more taxes. This is about the fact that in a world where you and I pay federal income taxes, but companies like Amazon and Chevron pay precisely zero on billions of dollars in profits. Something is out of whack in the system and you don’t have to be a die hard Democrat to know that those corporations and the wealthiest Americans ought to have to pay their fair share.

Pete Buttigieg: (31:42)
That’s why at least one outside group has scored the major campaigns, proposals looked at everything we said we want to invest in and every way we said we’re going to raise the revenue to do it. I’m very proud to tell you that when you look at ours, ours is the one that’s actually in the black and starts reducing the deficit over time.

Congresswoman Kuster: (31:58)
All right. They like that one. This is from Lisa in Rindge, New Hampshire. She’s a special educator and the parent of a special needs child that she adopted through foster care.

Pete Buttigieg: (32:14)
Hi, Lisa.

Congresswoman Kuster: (32:18)
Lisa is an adoption attorney for 25 years. Thank you very much. All right. I love this question. What advice would you give to Americans to help our country and as president, what would you ask of our citizens?

Pete Buttigieg: (32:34)
What a great question. First of all, Lisa, thank you for your work and your advocacy. We need more to go into your field. The president when he was inaugurated said, “I alone can fix it.” But I think we know that it doesn’t work that way. No one person, president or otherwise can fix big problems alone. I think it’s especially fitting here in New Hampshire where you have the culture of service where so many run for office and hold office here in New Hampshire. You don’t get to just say, “Why don’t they do this? Why don’t they fix this road? Or why don’t they change that law?” The spirit is why don’t we? I see that everywhere from frankly the sheer number of folks who are involved in elected office in Concord to the tradition of the town meeting. This is a very well understood civic responsibility in New Hampshire.

Pete Buttigieg: (33:31)
We need to make sure that we’re reinforcing a national culture of involvement, whether it’s in public processes or whether it’s in just rolling up your sleeves and getting stuff done. It’s one of the reasons why I’m proposing as a country we create a million paid voluntary national service opportunities a year. We know how much work there is to be done. I’m proposing a climate corps where people could work directly on things like weatherizing the homes of low income homeowners and seniors, an intergenerational corps that helps connect an older generation with the younger one serving one another, learning, mentoring and growing. And a community health corps that can make a difference whether it’s supporting neighbors with disabilities or whether it’s making sure that we’re getting ahead of some of the behavioral health and addiction challenges that we face in so many of our communities and cultivating an interest in the career of doing it.

Pete Buttigieg: (34:35)
Part of it is that the work is out there needing to be done, but part of it is something else. It’s that in our country that so badly needs to be healed and unified, we need more experiences in common. We have been so divided, we even get our information in different places. It feels like people are getting their own facts. So whenever we have something in common just to share an experience, it becomes a touchstone that reminds us we’re all Americans. For me, military service was that touchstone. I can have a conversation with somebody from maybe a different branch in a different generation and served in different places, but we have that thing in common. When I was deployed, there were people I was deployed with who were radically different from me. I mean regionally, racially, politically. Definitely politically very different. But we learned to trust each other with our lives because we had a job to do. I want every American to have that kind of connection without having to go to war in order to get it. That’s why I think national service is such a powerful idea.

Congresswoman Kuster: (35:43)
Okay. The last word goes to Canny. How can we protect vulnerable disabled people and elders if Medicare goes to block grants to save money?

Pete Buttigieg: (35:57)
Very good. When they talk about block grants for Medicaid, that’s another word for cutting Medicaid. We shouldn’t allow them to play these language trips. What’s the new one called? They rolled it out in the white house a few days ago. Adult healthy… I’m going to try not to say something unrepeatable here, but let’s just say we got a call a Medicaid cut, a Medicaid cut and that’s what that is. Yes, it is harming some of our most vulnerable Americans. Everything that they say they care about that we all know we care about from ensuring that people of any background get access to the care that they need to breaking addiction. Lives. You want to talk about the opioid crisis, lives depend on Medicaid to help deal with that. To ensuring that those who need longterm care are able to get it. The exact wrong direction to move in is these block grants that make cuts.

Pete Buttigieg: (36:59)
Let’s talk about something else that I think folks across the aisle can agree on, supporting rural communities. Do you know what most of the hospital closures in rural areas in America have in common right now is that they’re in states that did not expand Medicaid when they had the chance? So supporting Medicaid and I think Medicaid is what’s on your mind with the block grants, right? Supporting Medicaid and Medicare is also a question of how we support rural economic development and the ability to live in rural communities because we won’t have rural hospitals if we don’t have that kind of funding. If we want to tackle racial inequity in health right now, a big part of that is making sure that we have the resources to allow everybody to get access to care.

Pete Buttigieg: (37:43)
It’s not only about coverage. We’ve also got to deal with implicit bias. We’ve got to have more diverse medical providers. We’ve got to deal with a whole set of problems, but part of it is insurance. Even veterans. There’s more to taking care of veterans than the VA. Actually a majority of veterans get their medical care outside of the VA because they might not have a service connected issue or because of their financial situation. We have a responsibility to make sure that the whole system is shored up and yes, that means protecting Medicaid from these kinds of cuts.

Congresswoman Kuster: (38:13)
Thank you.