In an CNBC debate with Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) today, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) railed against a government takeover of health care until CNBC host John Harwood interjected and asked him, “Congressman, do you not agree that the private market is failing the American patient right now?” Paul agreed that we “do not have a market system working in health care today,” and said, “Let’s fix health care, let’s fix insurance, let’s make sure the uninsured get insured, let’s make sure we have a fix for people with pre-existing conditions.” Frank then interjected and called Ryan out:
FRANK: I just want to ask Paul one question. … When did you figure that out? Because apparently for the 12 years that the Republicans were in control — eight of which had a Republican president — that hadn’t occurred to you. So I’m glad you now understand that. Can you tell me at what moment the revelation occurred?
RYAN: First of all, I introduced on this subject about six years ago.
FRANK: You had control of the Congress. Why didn’t the Republican Congress fix it?
RYAN: I will have a moment of bipartisan agreement. We should have fixed this under our watch and I’m frustrated we didn’t.
Here’s what happened while Republicans were asleep at the wheel: