Former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson says the way to reduce federal spending is an across-the-board cut.
Thompson, a Republican presidential candidate who is campaigning in Iowa today, doesn’t think getting rid of individual government programs would work. "That is not how you save money," Thompson says.
If he’s elected president, Thompson says he’ll force department heads to submit budget plans for the next year that spend between one and five percent less than the current year. "That saves much more money than cutting individual programs," Thompson says. "That’s where the president of the United States can have an impact on reducing the deficit."
During a televised debate earlier this week, Thompson was asked to name one federal program he would cut, and Thompson replied that he would "eliminate" the "stockpile" of vaccines and other medications held by the Department of Health and Human Services. That’s the agency Thompson used to run. Thompson now disputes that.
"I didn’t say get rid of the stockpile," Thompson says. "What happened when they put in the (Department of) Homeland Security, they took part of the stockpile and put it in Homeland Security. I’d take that out of the Homeland Security, put it back in (the Centers for Disease Control, which is part of the Health and Human Services Department)…CDC has the expertise of running it."
According to Thompson, doctors should be in charge of the health care system when there’s an emergency like 9/11 or Hurricane Katrina rather than having FEMA, Homeland Security and the Department of Health and Human Services all share responsibility for dispensing medications from the government stockpile of vaccines.
You can read more about Thompson’s remarks on The Blog at www.radioiowa.com.