Sean Hannity repeated his false claim that Al Sharpton acknowledged that health care reform was "socialism." In fact, in his comments on Fox News discussing passage of the legislation, Sharpton responded to, but did not endorse, Geraldo Rivera's statement that "some would argue" that health care reform is "socialism."
HANNITY: It's $170,000 per family. You've got to wonder, you know, how does America ever recover from that? There's some interesting things: Al Sharpton said this is socialism. We just heard Howard Dean. Joe Biden is out there saying, you know, look, if you want to call it redistribution, well, I call it being fair. And it sounds like that -- is it Marxism: to each according to his needs from each according to his ability? Is there a label: collectivism, statism, socialism? Do labels even matter? How do you describe it?
Hannity: Sharpton was "setting the record straight." Hannity previously claimed that Sharpton was "setting the record straight" during his interview with Rivera, adding, "I don't think socialism is what most Americans were expecting when they elected President Obama, but from the looks of things, that's exactly what we are getting."
Sharpton did not endorse Rivera's comment. During a March 21 Fox News appearance to discuss passage of the health care reform bill, Sharpton stated, "I think that this began the transforming of the country the way the president had promised. This is what he ran on." After Geraldo Rivera interjected, "Some would argue to socialism," Sharpton responded:
SHARPTON: Well, first of all, then we'd have to say that the American public overwhelmingly voted for socialism when they elected President Obama. Let's not act as though the president didn't tell the American people -- the president promised the American people health reform when he ran. He was overwhelmingly elected running on that, and he has delivered what he promised. I don't understand Republicans saying this is against the will of the American people. They voted for President Obama, who said this was going to be one of the first things he would do, and he's done the first hurdle of that tonight. So I think the American people was heard loud and clear. This was not some concept the president introduced after he won. He ran on this, and the American people won tonight. Because they got finally something from a president they voted for who said he was going to do exactly this.