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Rubio, Trump Battle on ObamaCare — ‘What Is Your Plan?’ ‘You Don’t Know What That Means’


GOP presidential candidates Donald Trump and Florida Senator Marco Rubio battled over Obamacare during Thursday’s GOP presidential debate on CNN.


After Rubio stated that Trump said he likes the individual mandate in Obamacare, and expressed support for repealing it, before laying out his replacement. Trump said, “I agree with that 100%, except pre-existing condition[s], I would absolutely get rid of Obamacare, we’re going to have something much better, but pre-existing conditions, when I’m referring to that, and I was referring to that very strongly, on the show with Anderson Cooper, I want to keep pre-existing condition[s]. I think we need it. I think it’s a modern age, and I think we have to have it.”

He added, in response to a follow-up question, that it’s “wrong 100%” to say that the individual mandate is needed to ensure pre-existing conditions are covered.”

When asked if removing lines around states would solve the problem of pre-existing conditions, Trump answered, “That’s going to solve a lot of the problem. … The insurance companies are making an absolute fortune. Yes, they will keep pre-existing conditions, and that would be a great thing. Get rid of Obamacare, we’ll come up with new plans, but we should keep pre-existing conditions.”

Rubio then said, “[I]f I may about the insurance companies, you may not be aware of this, Donald, because you don’t follow this stuff very closely, but here’s what happened, when they passed Obamacare, they put a bailout fund in Obamacare. All of these lobbyists you keep talking about, they put a bailout fund in the law, that would allow public money to be used — taxpayer to bail out companies when they lost money, and we led the effort, and wiped out that bailout fund. The insurance companies are not in favor of me. They hate that. They’re suing now, to get that bailout money put back in. Here’s what you didn’t hear in that answer, and this is important guys. This is an important thing. What is your plan? I understand the lines around the state, whatever that means. This is not a game where you draw maps around — what is your plan?”

Trump then stated, “And you don’t know what it means. That’s the problem.”

Rubio repeated his question on what Trump’s plan is, while Trump said Rubio has a problem that he doesn’t know what he means when he refers to lines around states.

Trump continued, “I watched him meltdown two weeks ago with Chris Christie, I’ve got to tell you, the biggest problem he’s got, is he really don’t know about the lines. The biggest thing we’ve got, and the reason we have no competition, is because we have lines around the state and you have –.”

Rubio then cut in, “I already mentioned that as part of my plan. I know what that is. But what else is part of your plan? … [Y]our only thing is to get rid of the lines around the states? What else is part of your healthcare plan?”

Trump responded, “What the lines around the states means –.” Rubio then cut in, “That’s your only plan?” Which Trump denied. Rubio then said he would give Trump his time to develop his plan.

Trump then stated, “When you get rid of the lines, it brings in competition. So instead of having one insurance company taking care of New York or Texas, you’ll have many. They’ll compete. And it will be a beautiful thing.”

Rubio then asked, “So that’s the only part of the plan? Just the lines, the interstate competition?”

Trump said, “No — the nice part about the — you’ll have many different plans. You’ll have competition. You’ll have so many different plans.” Rubio then said, “Now he’s repeating himself.”

Trump denied this saying, “I don’t repeat myself. I don’t repeat myself.” He added, “Here’s the guy who repeats himself.” Rubio then said Trump repeats himself every day.

Trump then countered, “I watched him repeat himself five times four weeks ago –.” Rubio then cut in, “And I saw you repeat yourself five times five seconds ago.”

Trump continued referencing the New Hampshire debate, and Rubio said that Trump says the five same things every day, “Everyone’s dumb. He’s going to make America great again. We’re going to win, win, win. He’s winning in the polls. And the lines around the states. Every night. Same thing.”

Trump responded, “I tell the truth. I tell the truth.”

After the moderators got the floor to ask Trump about his plan, he was asked to talk more about his plan, to which he stated, “No, no, we’re going to have many different plans. Because there’s going to be competition.” Rubio then said, “He said it again.”

Trump was then asked if there was “anything else” he would like to add to his plan, to which he answered, “No. There’s nothing to add. What’s to add?”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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