Ron Paul went on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program on Wednesday in the wake of his second-place showing in the New Hampshire Primary, and Mark Halperin wasted no time before pouncing on Dr. Paul with a "gotcha" question.
After a brief, pro forma "congratulations," Halperin asked whether a President Paul would discontinue the federal Head Start program for early childhood development.
Dr. Paul gave a long, in-depth, comprehensive answer:
"It’s not Constitutional, but I wouldn’t put that on the list... You know, if we want a perfectly free society, you can’t wave a wand and get everything you want. So you have to work our way out of this... Social Security, and these other programs are unconstitutional... I believe I’m the only one that has a program that would protect us so that we can work our way out of it. And hopefully... take care of these programs. But Head Start, you know, some conservatives would say, “yeah, let’s cut head start and say we’re cutting something.” No, we have to cut the big things. Cut five departments, some of this occupation overseas and these senseless wars and try to work our way out and take care of people who have become so dependent. The Federal Reserve is unconstitutional, but my position isn’t to close it down in one day. My position is to give it competition and expose it for what it is and audit the Fed and work out of better monetary system. So I think that’s a much more reasonable approach than to say..."
At that point, Halperin interrupted, only to repeat the question about ending Head Start that Dr. Paul had just answered at length.
"But if you had you're way you'd eliminate Head Start," Halperin interjected.
Dr. Paul slammed the attempt to corner him, and replied to Halperin that "you're just putting words into my mouth, I don't know what your goal is... you're missing my whole point. It's a total distraction, what you are talking about."
Watch the testy exchange below, courtesy of MSNBC: