Ted Works for Texas Vets
Also appears on air with Jon-David Wells, Mike Gallagher Show
SAN ANTONIO, Texas – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) today joined KTSA’s Trey Ware for a live, in-studio interview at the Alamo Lounge. While in Military City, USA, Sen. Cruz appeared on several other Texas radio shows, including 660 AM The Answer’s The Wells Report, and Mike Gallagher show. There, Sen. Cruz discussed many issues Texans hold dear, including his work on behalf of veterans, the 2018 NDAA bill, and his efforts on health care reform.
When asked about his efforts on behalf of veterans, Sen. Cruz reaffirmed his commitment to bringing accountability to the VA, and expanding veteran’s choices.
“We all know the last several years the scandals we’ve seen in the VA,” Sen. Cruz said to Jon-David Wells. “We’ve seen the VA wrongfully denying care to veterans. We’ve seen some VA institutions keeping fake and bogus books, phantom books and hiding that Veterans were being denied lifesaving treatment that they had earned and were entitled too. So I have been pressing hard to reform the VA. One piece of it is accountability. Ensuring that those, who lie, who broke the law, are held accountable and I’ve helped pass legislation to do exactly that. Another piece of it, you just referenced, is on the IT side. Ensuring that the way records are kept in the VA is unified, its’s simplified, that you can’t hide, you can’t keep the books, but instead that everything is transparent so that we know exactly if veterans are being denied care so we can act to impose accountability and fix the problem.”
Sen. Cruz continued, “The biggest reform we can do for veterans is to expand choice. You know today I met with a number of veterans leaders here in north Texas, we did a round table. And there was widespread agreement that expanding the choice program is the most significant thing you can do to improve the VA system. I think every veteran has the right to go to the doctor of your choice. If you want to go to the VA you have earned that you have bled for it, but if you want to go to the local doctor, you want to go to the cardiologist down the street, you ought be able to do that and competition improves the VA.”
When asked about the 2018 NDAA bill, Sen. Cruz discussed his efforts to secure 13 amendments critical to Texas and U.S. national security.
“I was very active in the drafting of it,” Sen. Cruz said to Wells. “As you noted it had 13 amendments that were adopted focused heavily on Texas and taking care of the needs of the service men and women in this state. One of the most important pieces is the overall level of authorization of our military is it has increased to $700 billion. That is a $100 billion increase that was desperately needed. It is a very encouraging development that expands the F-35 program. That is critically important to North Texas – they’re just north of 30,000 jobs that depend on the F-35 [program].”
When asked about his efforts on health care, Sen. Cruz discussed his Consumer Freedom Amendment.
“The Consumer Freedom Amendment is focused on is giving all of us the freedom to buy the insurance we want,” Sen. Cruz said to Trey Ware. “And in particular, is an effort to bring conservatives and moderates, and to find a place that the Republican conference can unite on. You look at our republican majority in the Senate, it’s a narrow majority. We’ve got 52 Republicans. On Obamacare every Democrat has made clear that they’re completely unwilling to work with us. We start out with 48 hard no’s, which means we’ve got to get 50 out of 52 Republicans. If we lose three Republicans we’re done.”
Sen. Cruz continued, “The biggest thing I am pressing for is what I call the Consumer Freedom option,” Sen. Cruz said to Mike Gallagher. “That is giving consumers the freedom, giving you the freedom to choose what health insurance you want to buy. If you want to buy something with all the Obamacare mandates, all the bells and whistles, the full Cadillac plan, you can do that. You can pay for that if that is your choice. But the Consumer Freedom option says, in addition to those plans which will stay on the market, you can also buy any other plan you want. Which means if you want to buy a more trimmed down plan, maybe you want to buy just catastrophic insurance. You don’t have money for the full Cadillac but you do want something if God forbid you get some horrible disease or you get hit by a truck, you can do that.”
Audio from the radio interviews may be found below: