Rep. Paul Fitzwater Likens Federal Health Care Coverage Expansion to Feeding "Zoo Animals"

Categories: Politics

Paul Fitzwater.jpg
Rep. Paul Fitzwater
Buried in a CBS St. Louis story on the local impact of the Federal Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, is a rather bizarre quote from Representative Paul Fitzwater, a Republican from Potosi, which is coming under fire.

Fitzwater was being interviewed about a study which found that 525,000 Missourians will be eligible for healthcare premium tax credits when some of the biggest provisions included in the Affordable Care Act go into effect in January 2014. The article prefaces his comments by saying that Fitzwater is not opposed to tax credits, but thinks that Obamacare as a whole is bad for the country.

And then he made a little analogy which...he might want to clarify.

Fitzwater particularly opposes the expansion of Medicaid as laid out in the federal law, saying it ought to be reformed rather than expanded. Then he gave this little gem of a quote:

Fitzwater said Americans can become too dependent on government funds.

"When you go to the zoo, there's a sign that says please don't feed the animals," Fitzwater said. "There's a reason, because they keep coming back."

Setting aside the fact that the analogy doesn't really stand up to logical scrutiny (we didn't think the animals could come back because, you know, they're in a zoo), the representative's words are not sitting well with labor leaders and other progressive advocates:

Daily RFT put in a call to Fitzwater's office to see if he'd like to amend his sentiment. We'll update if we hear back.

Follow Jessica Lussenhop on Twitter at @Lussenpop. E-mail the author at Jessica.Lussenhop@RiverfrontTimes.com.

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18 comments
JamesMadison
JamesMadison topcommenter

Hyper-sensitive liberals getting upset over a poorly worded analogy. He clearly flubbed it since zoo animals keep coming back because they cannot leave. Might have used the feeding a stray cat, and before long you have a cat expecting to be fed.


But let's not get upset with Mr. Obama calling an AG the prettiest by far, considering other female AG are also in office (they must be quite ugly). Not the president thinks AG are entering beauty contests for his personal pleasure. No wonder the First Lady referred to herself as a single working mother.

david.day
david.day

I have heard a similar comment before and think Rep. Fitzwater just got it a little wrong, but with the same meaning.Anytime you go in a conservation area or wildlife preserve there will be signs that say not to feed the animals because they will become dependent on handouts and lose the ability to take care of themselves.Most that aren’t in attack mode understood what he was saying.

Kenzington
Kenzington

Oh, shit, the RFT comments pages are starting to resemble STLtoday.

Terry Burk
Terry Burk

That's the catch. There is no expanded coverage. In over 80% of the population coverage options are decreased with eventual funneling to a one payor govt controlled system which has been proven not to work throughout the world. If you are not familiar with the intricacies if the healthcare system and the proposed system then it may seem like a good deal. In actuality it will send the healthcare bills for us and businesses through the roof. We are already seeing this and it hasn't even been implemented. Nobody is saying safety coverage for children and temporary coverage for those in need is a bad thing. As long as it is temporary.

maggie_aubuchon
maggie_aubuchon

I agree with Mr. FITZWATER! Everyone who knows the man understands exactly what he is saying. He is talking about the people who use and abuse the goverment system over and over again.Mr. Fitzawater is speaking about the people who sign up permanently for government supplements because they're to lazy to work which in turn are taking away from those who may truly need temporary assistance. If you can't get that from what he said plain as day, then you're just looking to find something negative in a good man.

kristina72
kristina72

You go Coach Fitz!!! We are you behind you 100%!

skeet26
skeet26

Well said Representative. Don't let the liberal buffoons twist and turn your words against you. It is just their typical attempt to bully people into silence. You are 110% correct and they know it.

Christopher Schmidt
Christopher Schmidt

Just as long as he and his cohorts don't get expanded healthcare coverage either, have to make it fair all the way around. Oh wait, we need to vote ourselves in a pay raise too, forgot that.

Thee Lovingcup
Thee Lovingcup

Really? Healthcare for children and the needy creates "welfare addiction?" I don't think so, and the rational world doesn't agree with that. http://www.ccstl.org/

Terry Burk
Terry Burk

It is an accurate analogy and nothing else. Similar to do not feed the bears in the national parks. They become dependent on the handouts and lose their abilities as hunters. Just as people become addicted to welfare and lose or refuse to use their abilities to support themselves or their families.

Alexander Wilson
Alexander Wilson

Every so often the Republicans open their mouths and the truth comes out... not that we are zoo animals, of course, but what they really think and feel about all of us.

Thee Lovingcup
Thee Lovingcup

Real classy, compare human beings to animals being fed at the zoo... That kind of rhetoric is for dinosaurs.

Esteban Mainzer
Esteban Mainzer

liberals in denial start complaining in 3...2...1...

skeet26
skeet26

@maggie_aubuchon Amen. People are so stupid they want to twist everyone's words. Amazing they are smart enough to take statements out of context without seeing the actual meanings of what was said, huh?

DeaconDandy
DeaconDandy

@skeet26 Yeah, comparing people to zoo animals is all the liberal media's fault. Genius. Just genius.

skeet26
skeet26

@DeaconDandy it is, they are the ones twisting his words. You have to be smart to know what the analogy was. But I don't know why I am trying to explain that to you.

skeet26
skeet26

@DeaconDandy now you are twisting my words. Can't reason with an idiot though. I never said he didn't compare. Said you have to be smart to be able to read what he actually said. Let me guess, you didn't finish 8th grade?

DeaconDandy
DeaconDandy

@skeet26 So he wasn't comparing them to zoo animals; he was just using an analogy...which is a way of comparing things.

Let me guess, you went to "school" in Potosi or those whereabouts?

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