Possible Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson on Wednesday lashed out at CNN host Wolf Blitzer for “focusing on the words” that he used when he compared the United States to Nazi Germany.
Earlier this year, Carson had told the conservative news outlet Breitbart that the U.S. was “very much like Nazi Germany” because President Barack Obama was using the government to “intimidate the population.”
“What I heard the comparison of the United States of America — the greatest country in the world, the greatest country ever — to Nazi Germany, I said, what is he talking about?” Blitzer told Carson on Wednesday.
“See, what you were doing is allowing words to affect you more than listening to what was actually being said,” Carson insisted. “Nazi Germany experienced something horrible. The people in Nazi Germany largely did not believe in what Hitler was doing, but did they say anything? Of course not. They kept their mouths shut.”
“The fact that our government is using instruments of government like the IRS to punish its opponents, this is not the kind of thing, as far as I’m concerned, that is a Democrat or Republican issue. This is an American issue. This is an issue that threatens all of our liberty, all or our freedom.”
Blitzer, however, wasn’t satisfied: “But to make the comparison, Dr. Carson, to Nazi Germany, the slaughter of six million Jews by the Nazis, the devastation that erupted in Europe and around the world to the United States of America, I want you to reflect on what that means.”
“Well, again, you are just focusing on the words Nazi Germany and completely missing the point,” Carson replied. “And that’s the problem right now, that’s what PC-ism is all about: You may not say this word regardless of what your point is because if you say that word, you know, I go into a tizzy. We can do better than that.”
“We need to get to the point where we can look beyond the word, and look for the meaning,” he said, adding that he had no intention of revising his remarks.
And when it came to his speech last year that referred to Obamacare as the “worst thing” since slavery, Carson said that liberals needed to “learn English” because he wasn’t equating the president’s health care law with slavery.
“By taking the most important thing that you have, your health and your health care, and turning that over to the government, you fundamentally shift the power — a huge chunk of it from the people to the government,” he argued. “That is not American as far as I’m concerned, and we can do so much better than that.”
Blitzer pointed out that Carson was implying that the Affordable Care Act was worse that the Great Depression, the Vietnam War, and the terrorists attacks of Sept. 11, 2011.
“I think it’s nonproductive to get into worse than this and worse than that,” Carson said. “That’s not the point of what I was saying. The point of what I was saying — and we have to learn to talk about what is the point — the point is a major fundamental shift of power has occurred.”
Watch the video below from CNN, broadcast Dec. 3, 2014.