All the things that Layton says to excuse himself are actually good arguments for private health care.
Layton had hernia surgery at the Shouldice Hospital, a private facility in the Toronto suburb of Thornhill, while he was serving as a Toronto city councillor.
The NDP leader said he wasn't aware the clinic was private when he went for his surgery in the mid-1990s.
"It's just part of the system,'' Layton said in an interview. "The doctor says, `Go there.' You pay with your (Ontario health) card. It never occurred to me (it was) anything other than medicare, which it is."
[That's exactly the point Jack, private health care is not the bogeyman you make it out to be]
"I can tell you now if my doctor ever refers me anywhere, I'll ask him that question. It never occurred to me at the time, it wasn't a controversy at the time. It wasn't something on one's mind.''
Layton stressed that the Shouldice facility is a not-for-profit facility that has been part of the Ontario medical system for decades.
[It's not for profit, but it's private, and you've promised to ban them or at least prevent public money going to them for services, as was the case with your surgery]
Earlier in the campaign, Layton criticized Conservative Leader Stephen Harper who said he would send a loved one to a private clinic if it would ease their pain.
Layton pointed to family illnesses, such as his wife Olivia Chow's cancer treatment and his own attack of appendicitis, as instances where he has had to make the choice to support the public system. He didn't mention his hernia operation.
[Um, Jack, the best way to "support" the public health system is to not use it. It's not like our over-crowded public hospitals are screaming for more patients.]