This post originally appeared on Think Progress.
Last month, Alaska GOP U.S. Senate candidate and Tea Party favorite Joe Miller said that unemployment benefits are unconstitutional. “The unemployment compensation benefits have gotten — first of all, it’s not constitutionally authorized,” he said, adding, “I think that’s the first thing that’s gotta be looked at.”
Today on CBS’ Face the Nation, Miller — who is currently ahead of incumbent Lisa Murkowski in the state’s U.S. Senate GOP primary — went a bit further. Host Bob Schieffer noted that Miller wants to privatize Social Security and phase out Medicare and wondered whether those positions were a bit extreme. But Miller didn’t think so, suggesting that the U.S. Constitution supports his view:
MILLER: Well, yeah I would suggest to you that if one thinks that the Constitution is extreme then you’d also think the Founders are extreme. We just simply want to get back to basics, restore essentially the constitutional foundation of the country and that means the federal government becoming less onerous, less involved than every basically item of our lives and what that means is there does have to be some transition. [...]
We have to look at all the options that are out there, including privatization [of Social Security]. It’s certainly something that Bush championed…it is basically part of the crisis of leadership in DC to not look at Social Security and understand that there has got to be a solution posed.
Miller’s views on global warming are also “very extreme.” Last week, he told a local Alaska newspaper that he does not believe that human activity is contributing to climate change (despite overwhelming evidence finding that it has). “We know the temperature change is part of the process of our existence,” he said, but “we haven’t heard there’s man-made global warming.”
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