tv Washington Journal Rep. Buddy Carter CSPAN September 16, 2022 11:04pm-11:34pm EDT
there are a lot of places to get political information, but only at c-span do you get it straight from the source. no matter where you are from or where you stand on the issues, c-span is america's network. unfiltered, unbiased, one for -- word for word. if it happens here, here, or anywhere that matters. america is watching on c-span. power by cable. >> we are joined by representative buddy carter, who has served georgia's first congressional district along the atlantic coast there since 2005. congressman carter, welcome to "washington journal." >> thank you for having me. host: by training and profession, you're a pharmacist. you and a number of your republican hidden colleagues have introduced a bill in the house, the pharmacist conscience protection act, which would give pharmacists more free reign in dispensing medication they suspect to be used to terminate a pregnancy.
can you tell us more about what is in this legislation and your motivation for introducing it? cing it? guest: first of all, the motivation is simple, just because you wear a white coat does not mean that you do not have first amendment rights. you do. look, we're trained us pharmacists to protect patients, to do no harm. whenever i was practicing pharmacy and whenever i practice pharmacy, if i have a patient come in who is pregnant, than i am treating two patients, that mother and that child. and that is extremely important. you know, to think that we would be forced to dispense a prescription that we knew was going to harm that child, that goes against everything that we are trained against. that is simply -- to force someone to do that against their moral or their conscious objections, that is what we are trying to prohibit here.
it is simply wrong for the government to be involved in health care like this. health care should be between the patient and the doctor, not the federal government. host: what would the leaguer -- what are the legal measures your proposed legislation would do to allow pharmacists to defer, resist dispensing that have medication? guest: it would say that hhs, who has promulgated these rules and is trying to enforce these rules, would not have the right to do that. essentially, it would say that pharmacists have the ability to morally or consciously object to filling a prescription that they know is going to harm a patient. and listen, a baby is a patient. a baby in the womb is a patient to us. that is the way we're trained, and that is the way that we approach our jobs. it is to protect both the
patient and the baby. you know, we are constantly warning mothers, if you are pregnant, you should not be taking this because it could harm your fetus. that is the way we're trained. and to think the government is going to force us to dispense a prescription that we know is going to harm that child, that goes against everything that we believe in. host: with that legislation also allow pharmacists to resist, to turn down people's prescriptions for contraceptive dedication? guest: no, no. look, i have dismissed -- i cannot imagine, i am sure it is in the millions, of birth control pills throughout my career. what we're talking about here is something that would purposely cause the patient to abort a child. and listen, as a pharmacist, i
knew there were certain drugs, if i got this drug and it was written for a quantity of one, i knew what it was going to be used for and i refused to dispense it spewed when i was a member of the georgia state legislature and state senate my sponsored legislation and pass legislation that said that a pharmacist cannot be fired from a job because they refused to fill a prescription then he was going to be used for an abortion. host: can you think of another, since your professional life -- can you think of another in your professional life or arm assists you know that have been faced with this moral decision not to prescribe a medication, outside of the realm of abortion medication? guest: we face it every day. back when we had the big problem with opioids, and we still have a big problem with opioids, with prescribing of opioids -- we pretty much have it under control now, but i can remember
a time when we had pill mills, physicians out there that were doing nothing more than writing illegitimate prescriptions, and when we would get those, we would refuse to fill them if we knew. and you knew that was what they were going to be used for. we called it the holy trinity of drug abuse, when you would get three prescriptions, one for xanax, one for oxycontin, and then the other for soma. when we would get this prescriptions and get them in quantities of like 180 and they would be from one of these pill mills, and i can remember specifically that i was working one president's day and i was in the georgia state legislature -- we were not in session that day and i was working, and i had a patient come in who had three of those prescriptions and they were from a physician down in florida. she presented them to me and then presented me with her
kentucky drivers license, and here i am in georgia. i refused because i knew those strikes were going to be abused. host: representative buddy carter is with us until 8:00 eastern. we welcome your phone calls. (202) 748-8000 for democrats, (202) 748-8001 for republicans, and independents and others (202) 748-8002. we will get to your cosmo motel early -- your calls momentarily. the american medical association and other medical groups have come out opposed to the legislation, concerned about it. headline here, ama pharmacists like patient access to care and medication abortion. they say the language of your bill is vague, unclear whether it prohibits certain medications only when prescribed to induce abortions or whether medication is prohibited entirely, it has the potential to induce abortion regardless of the condition for which it was prescribed.
our members and patients report that this uncertainty is disrupting care. patients who rely on these occasions for reasons unrelated to pregnancy termination report new challenges in accessing these and other medications, and it is placing our patients' health at risk, according to this statement from the ama and others. guest: that is not a surprise it is coming from the ama. they are as liberal as they can be. i am member of the republican doctors caucus in congress, and we are talking about the fact, consistently, frequently talking about the fact of how woke the ama has been. nothing could be further from the truth. if you need that occasion for arthritis, for stomach ulcers, you are still going to be able to get that medication. but when i see a prescription from one side effect, i know what it will be used for and will not dispense it.
and that is my right as a pharmacist. that is what we're talking about here. to essentially try to fear monger and say, oh, you're not going to be able to get legitimate prescriptions, ama knows that is not true and know it is not hindering anyone from getting medications that they need. you will still be able to get those medications, and pharmacists have a responsibility and they accept that responsibility and make sure they dispenses medications. host: another quick question before calls, on inflation, the inflation rate in august climbing to 8.3%. inflation remains stubbornly high in august, rattling consumers and investors. if the republicans take the house for the 118th congress and the upcoming midterm election, what is the biggest thing that house republicans can do to stem inflation, in your view? guest: stop the spending. do no harm.
look, the democrats just do not get it you would think they would learn their lessons from the american rescue plan, which economists tell us, a lot of them say that it added four percentage points to our inflation rate. now they have come out with this inflation reduction act, which i referred to as the inflation acceleration act, and that has nothing but pouring fuel on the fire. when you talk about inflation being an over 8%, you're talking about the average person losing a month's pay a year. can you imagine going without a month paycheck? i do not know that many of us can afford to do that, and that is what inflation is doing, nothing more than taxation. it hurts the working class. it hurts the lower class. and those are the ones who sofa -- who suffer the most, those on fixed incomes who can ill-afford to pay more for goods if they
are not getting an increase, or if they are, it is not keeping up with the rate of inflation. those are the ones who are hurt. host: let's hear from our viewers and listeners. first is stephen in pennsylvania on the independent line. good morning. caller: good morning. good morning, america. good morning, representative carter. the reason i am calling is i take issue with your statement that health care care is between a doctor, a pharmacist, and a patient. i do not know how you inserted yourself into the equation and why you wish to make moral judgments based on your religion for dispensing medications prescribed by a doctor. there is no confidentiality agreement between myself and my pharmacist. he is there to do a job.
and if you are worried that a pill might give someone an abortion, well, that is your problem. i wish you would wish more about the unwanted children that are born every year. i was raised unwanted. i felt unwanted and loved all my life. i would not wish that on anyone, and you're promoting it. what are you going to do with the one million unwanted children that are going to be born every year? host: we will get a response. guest: first of all, i could not disagree more with the caller. i do believe that health care is a private thing between the patient and physician and the pharmacist, whenever we're talking about dispensing medications, and yes, i believe that pharmacist do have the right to morally object to dispensing a prescription that they know is going to harm a
child. we are praying -- we are trained to do the opposite, trained to warn patients that this will have an adverse effect on your child. that is the way that we are trained. we are trained to do no harm here that is the way physicians are trained. and the federal government should not be inserted into that equation. that is what this is all about. host: fort lauderdale, barry on the democrats line. caller: yes, good morning. what i do not understand is i am sure that carter is a good christian and a good man, probably evangelical, but what right does he have to insert religious feelings to myself, who is a jew, who has absolutely no problems with abortion? what happened to separation of
church and state? i think he is the biggest hypocrite god ever created. host: i will let you respond, but let me ask you, what do you think of the efforts of senator lindsey graham of carolina, a federal ban on abortion after 15 weeks? guest: as far as that legislation, i have not seen it yet. i have not had the opportunity to review it. but on the surface, i will tell you the supreme court has made a decision and that is at the federal government is not involved in it goes back to the state. it should be up to the states now to make those decisions related to abortion. i make no qualms about the fact that i am pro-life. i do believe that life is sacred. i believe that life is precious and should be protected. and i believe that we are all created in the image of god. so have very strong beliefs on that. but i have to say that i disagree with the caller. i don't think that i should be forced as a pharmacist to do
something that i know is going to harm a patient when i am trained and when pharmacists are trained to do no harm. i think that goes against everything. just because we put on a white coat does not mean that we lose our first amendment rights. host: here is deborah and south bend, indiana, republican line. caller: hi, dr. carter. yes, i want to ask you, i'm a great grandmother and i have access to my great-grandchildren , as well as the neighborhood children. and what is alarming to me and what i am concerned about is the
sentinel -- fit no -- the fentanyl candy around. i saw these little candies laying around, and so i was tempted to pick one up. i thought, what a minute, i got to educate my community and the young people. we got to teach our children that candy -- if you are serious now -- i had a conversation over labor day with my neighbor, and i said, look, we have got to do something different now. because we have got to tell our kids, our kids are not going to be able to take candy. candy is a bad thing now.
host: we will let you go there. anything to add to that? guest: what a great call. she is spot on. what they doing now with fit no, and this is what we need to secure our southern border, and you think just want to keep people from coming over here, inhumane -- no, we are talking about the flow of drugs across the border and it is infesting all our communities and killing our children, killing our population here. fentanyl can kill every american seven times over. last year, we lost 107,000 people due to overdose. we lose over 300 people every day from fentanyl poisoning, and many of this is being masked as candy. our children are the ones who need to be educated and need to understand that this is dangerous. host: bill in tampa, florida,
independent line. caller: good morning, representative. i don't understand how people like you will sit around and say,, we want to do this, protect the unborn, this and that -- how many kids have you adopted out of foster care? how much money comes from your personal budget to support kids in foster care? how can you, representative -- you got no problem trying to protect the unborn, but what do you personally do to protect the born, especially unarmed black people that the police will shoot on the spot and say, oh, i saved my life -- how many people have you adopted of color out of foster care out of your personal budget? host: congressman carter? guest: i do not really know how
to respond to that except to tell you that i do support different charities that help with this type of thing. of course, in congress, we support programs that help foster children. i understand that that is a concern and certainly something that we need to be helping with. it is part of our outreach, part of the outreach of the church, and of our faith. it is called upon us to make sure we are helping these people. i participate in that. look, i am not going to be apologizing for the way i feel about a child and about abortion. i am pro-life, proudly pro-life. we're not talking about -- when you talk about a six week old, we're not talking about a glob of cells here or just tissue, at six weeks, a child, a fetus, you
can see they have developed eyesockets and eyebrows, and they suck their thumb. at 12 weeks, they can feel excruciating pain. this is a real child, a baby. and we need to be protecting that. host: the deadline you and your colleagues face two weeks from today with the end of the fiscal year, a headline, lawmakers are eyeing a stopgap spending measure to avoid a shutdown through mid-december, so passed the midterm elections. what are your thoughts on what might be in that continuing resolution, the short-term spending measure? guest: well, not being in the majority, of course we do not have a lot of control over that. i do not know what democrats have in mind. first of all, we need to get this done we do not need a government shutdown. that is not good for anyone, republicans, democrats, especially not for taxpayers.
we need to continue on, as you indicate, at the end of this month, we will have to have something done. i hope it is a clean cr i hope. there's not a lot of things added to it. if we have to do a cr and we're going to have to, i hope it is clean. it will kick the can down the road into after the midterm election, first of december, then we will come back in and there are a lot of thoughts about what will happen during the lame-duck session, but as of yet, i don't know. host: stephen in wilmington, illinois, democrats line. caller: yeah, you are a good example of the arrogance of the white male christian in this country, and if you don't want to dispense these medications, maybe you should not be a pharmacist. you say this law is not going to go any further, what you just pointed out, but you have three judges on the supreme court who lied to get on the bench. so why should we trust you on
this? and i would just like to say that i always felt sherman did not do enough in georgia. goodbye. host: we will move to tony in arkansas, republican line. caller: yes, i tell you what the first thing i would do, i would send 100,000 expeditionary force marines down into mexico to kill the cartel. i would put 50,000 people on the border. i was shocked all that down. and we will decide what we're going to do with that and the other people, because we have got to take care of the people bringing fentanyl into the united states, poisoning our water system and could kill williams of people within one week. we have got to do something about this, people are thank you. host: your thoughts? guest: i could not agree more about the fact that we have to do something about fentanyl. it is affecting every community. i think a lot of people think of this at the border as being just
a problem at border states, texas, arizona, new mexico, and california. no, these drugs are coming across that border and affecting every state, even in my district, in the rural areas of south georgia, i have had some county sheriff's tell me they have gangs that are influenced by the drug cartels, right here in south georgia. don't think for one minute that this is not infesting every community in america. it is. and we have got to stop this. how the vice president can sit there and say that we have got a secure border is beyond me. i have been to the border five times since i have been a member of congress and the last eight years, and the president at the united states come as a senator and vice president and president has never been to the border. it is ridiculous what is going on at the border right now. a country without borders is not a country at all. host: in maryland next, audie,
good morning democrats line. caller: i have been listening to this whole conversation, and it is amazing how we continue to hear republicans try to impose their beliefs on the rest of the country. you have every right to never want to take medication from a pharmacy or whatever that is, but now you go as far as saying, pharmacists, you have a right to object to fill out prescriptions . how far will you go with this? you are forcing your beliefs on the rest of us. when are you going to stop playing god? let god be god. i do not know what you are so concerned about. please focus on what is important. the thing you guys should be worried about, that is ok, but get out of this business of abortion. host: congressman carter, on
your proposed legislation on giving pharmacists that right to refuse to dispense that medication, have you heard from colleagues in that business, in your profession, that they would like to have this as an option? guest: absolutely. look, we are not saying -- if a pharmacist chooses to dispense that medication, certainly they have that right. we are saying we should not be forced to do it, and that is what the federal government wants to do. these callers are saying you should not be making that decision, but you are telling me that someone else is going to make the decision to force me to do it? that is what is wrong here. if a pharmacist wants to dispense medication that they know is going to harm a child, that is up to the pharmacist. i disagree with it and do not think they should be doing it, but i am not telling them they cannot do it. but the federal government wants to tell me that i must do it.
that is the problem. host: you mentioned earlier, the example of refusing that prescription. the woman from kentucky, you are in georgia. looking at the opioid crisis in the country, do you think pharmacist overall should have been more vocal about what was going on with opioid prescriptions across this country? guest: we were vocal. and we were hollering. we were baking the dea -- we were begging the dea. they drag their feet and did not do anything quick enough. they have done it now and it has helped. the changes that have been made, the dispensing of prescriptions of dangerous medications and of opioids for illegitimate uses has decreased significantly and almost to the point where it has decreased too much and that we are hurting people who need that medication. sometimes you can swing that
pendulum too far. in a lot of cases, we have done that, and we need to get it back to those who truly need the medication. however, if i look back into the late 2005 to 2012 when all this was going on in the pill mills are coming, i was introducing legislation in the georgia state legislature to do away with pill mills and address this. so to blame pharmacists or this is wrong. physicians were participating in the spirit some of them are still practicing now, and that host: a couple more calls. julius in chicago heights, illinois, independent line. caller: mr. carter, you, as a pharmacist, would deny pregnant woman prescriptions prescribed by her doctor which might save her life, and if she don't survive, the baby can't survive.
you sound like you got about as much sense as trump. i would like you to respond to that. guest: i am not sure what i am supposed to respond to, that i have as much sense as trump or dispensing a prescription that i know is going to harm a child. look, i do not care how many laws you pass, i am not doing it. that is all there is to it. i'm trying to protect arm assists and give them the right to make that moral objection -- i am to. for the federal government to force a pharmacist to give an abortion would be the same thing as the federal government going into tele dr. " you're going -- tell a doctor " you are going to perform an abortion." what is a successful abortion? when only one person dies? if the pharmacist
conscientiously objects to that -- host: our next caller is from north carolina on the democrat'' line. caller: mr. carter, you really sound like a hypocrite. i cannot understand what you are saying because on the one hand, you're saying you want to protect the child. that is understandable. on the other hand, once the child is here, i do not hear republicans talking about how to protect life once it has gotten here. guest: there are programs out there. there are centers out there that help patients and are there to assist parents and mothers who
need it. we have a number in our district here in the state of georgia. they are here to help in just that situation there. we want to help people. we understand there are unwanted pregnancies and that is why we have programs and centers designed to serve those people and help those people. i would submit to you that there are programs out there people are night using that would help them. washington journal continues. host: joining us here is jim himes of connecticut who serves on the select intelligence community and financial services. good morning. we will pick it up where we left with what he carter on the issue of inflation. i asked him how