Republican presidential contender Ted Cruz cross-examined 2016 rival Donald Trump on Thursday’s GOP debate stage, getting the billionaire businessman on record denying many of his former positions on health care.
“True or false: you said the government should pay for everyone’s health care?” Cruz asked Trump.
“That’s false,” Trump flatly said.
“You’ve never said that?” Cruz asked, seemingly surprised by the denial.
“I said it worked in a couple countries,” Trump quipped.
“But you never stood on this debate stage and said, ‘It worked great in Canada and Scotland, we should do it here’?” Cruz pressed.
“No, I did not,” Trump replied.
Trump said that “we are going to have private health care” under his administration, but “we are not going to allow people to die on the sidewalks and streets of our country if I’m president.”
“So would the government pay for their health care?” Cruz asked.
“We are going to take those people—,” Trump said before the Texas senator interjected.
“Yes or no? Just answer the question,” Cruz pressed, failing to get an answer.
After the debate, the Cruz campaign released an online ad splicing Trump’s answers on the debate stage with positions he had previously held supporting government health care.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) February 26, 2016
Cruz was not the only Republican to tangle with Trump on health care. Florida Senator Marco Rubio grilled Trump repeatedly, asking him to lay out his plan — something the real estate mogul struggled to do.
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