ccRepublican Jason Chaffetz thinks the reason you couldn’t afford health insurance is because you bought an iPhone. pic.twitter.com/3bxyyZ2XP0
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) March 7, 2017
Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz has backed away from his statement that low-earning Americans shouldn’t buy the new iPhone so they can afford health care.
The lawmaker landed in hot water when he spoke about the American Healthcare Act, the Donald Trump administration’s replacement plan for the Affordable Care Act introduced during Barack Obama’s presidency. When CNN’s “New Day” anchor noted that access for low-income individuals doesn’t mean they’ll be covered, Chaffetz retorted they would have to sacrifice their cellular luxury.
“We’re getting rid of those things that people said that they don’t want,” he says on the broadcast Tuesday, March 7. “Americans have choices, and they’ve got to make a choice. So, rather than getting that new iPhone that they just love and want to go spend hundreds of dollars on that, maybe they should invest in their own health care.”
Chaffetz attempted to clarify his comment on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” Tuesday, saying, “Maybe I didn’t say it as smoothly as I possibly could, but people need to make a conscious choice and I believe in self-reliance and they’re going to have to make those decisions.”
The original condescending remarks sent the Twittersphere into attack mode.
People in poverty use upwards of 70% of their income just to pay rent but the reason they won't be able to afford healthcare is…an iPhone?
— Clint Smith (@ClintSmithIII) March 7, 2017
Really need this heart surgery but the iPhone 8 is about to come out. Decisions, decisions. pic.twitter.com/RNmPK3kKC9
— Matthew A. Cherry (@MatthewACherry) March 7, 2017
Some sided with the House Oversight Committee chairman.
@ABC7 Amén! It’s seriously ridiculous how some people collect welfare like candy but splurge on the newest iPhone and Apple Watch.
— mojomami (@califonialove14) March 7, 2017