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Obama on Health Care: ‘We Are Going to Get This Done’

Posted on Jul 17, 2009

Despite rumblings from detractors on both sides of the aisle, President Barack Obama held his ground as he held forth about health care reform in a speech at the White House on Friday afternoon, declaring that he was “absolutely convinced” that substantial changes to the system will be made this year.

The Washington Post:

With every new brush fire, Obama faces growing pressure to relent on his midsummer deadline for House and Senate passage. That marker was established to keep momentum going, but with two weeks remaining on the House calendar and three in the Senate before they recess, the timetable appears all but unattainable.

Yet so far, the president has refused to yield. “I realize that the last few miles of any race are the hardest to run, but I have to say now is not the time to slow down, and now is certainly not the time to lose heart,” Obama said.

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By KDelphi, July 20, 2009 at 12:35 am Link to this comment

Cathy—great article…everyone should read it. (and weep…)

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By KDelphi, July 20, 2009 at 12:31 am Link to this comment

Cathy—Thanks for the link—I have to log off of this to go to it (old pc)

I am beyond disappointed with this. It seems that the neo-liberal sites thought that just an amendment by Kucinich would make single payer supporters just
“go away”...unless we die, we wont.

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By MarthaA, July 19, 2009 at 9:22 pm Link to this comment

I hope the United States can manage to have good health care for U.S. citizens because even CUBA has great health care for their citizens, as well as numerous other nations. View the following documentary:

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By John Hanks, July 19, 2009 at 7:40 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It looks to me like Obama is another corporate shill.  Is anyone really surprised?

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By Fat Freddy, July 19, 2009 at 5:35 pm Link to this comment

There’s an excellent article I came across from 1993. It explains the history of health insurance in this country, and specifically identifies the problems. It also offers solutions, not band-aids.

<a >Health care in the twentieth century: a history of government interference and protection</a>

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By Cathy, July 19, 2009 at 5:16 pm Link to this comment

Read Obama’s Health Care Charade from Black Agenda Report.  This is the best article I’ve read on the Obama deception regarding healthcare.  I read nothing in this article that hasn’t come across my mind from everything that I have read.  Anyway, fascinating read.’s-health-care-charade

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By doublestandards/glasshouses, July 19, 2009 at 11:53 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

With the white house and both houses of congress the democrats can’t get health care with a public option done, say nothing about single payer.  There is no democratic party.  They say they want to be “bipartisan”.  Did FDR worry about being bipartisan?  What Nader has been trying to tell us for at least the last 12 years is correct.  It’s time for progressives to get serious about forming another party.

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By MarthaA, July 19, 2009 at 8:43 am Link to this comment

Target House Dems on Health Care

Saturday 18 July 2009

by: Sam Stein |  Visit article original @ The Huffington Post

  Ignoring criticism - namely from Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid - that inter-party targeting was ineffective, Barack Obama’s campaign arm is expanding its health care ad buy into the districts of key conservative House Democrats.

  Late Friday night Organizing for America and the Democratic National Committee announced the expansion of the “It’s Time” ad purchase, which uses personal stories of health care struggles to drive home the need for reform. The initial purchase was on national cable and in eight states with critical Democratic and moderate Republican Senators.

  Now the scope of the campaign is expanding. The ad will appear in the media markets that overlap with the congressional districts of 15 members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Eleven of those districts belong to Democrats, including Rep. Zack Space (Ohio), Rep. John Barrow (Georgia), Rep. Jay Inslee (Washington), Rep. Mike Ross (Arkansas), Rep. Bart Gordon (Tennessee), Rep. Baron Hill (Indiana), Rep. Charlie Melancon (Louisiana), Rep. Mike Doyle (Pennsylvania), Rep. Jim Matheson (Utah), Rep. Bart Stupak (Michigan), Rep. Jerry McNerney (California).

  The four Republican districts belong to Rep. Fred Upton (Michigan), Rep. Mary Bono Mack (California), and Rep. Greg Walden (Oregon), Rep. Sue Myrick (North Carolina)

  For reform advocates, the Energy and Commerce Committee remains the toughest venue of the three committees handling health care in the House of Representatives, in large part because of the Blue Dog and moderate Democrats that make up its ranks. In making this purchase, Organizing for America either is worried about the committee’s progress or—much more likely—sending a message that it has no problem applying pressure on fellow party members.

  No representative is named in the ad. But every one of the aforementioned members will know that the spots are airing in their districts. The markets where the ad will run, according to the OFA/DNC press release, are: Savannah, Palm Springs, Seattle, Nashville, Bloomington, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, New Orleans, Pittsburgh, Charlotte, Little Rock, Columbus, Marquette, Grand Rapids and Medford.

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By MarthaA, July 19, 2009 at 8:40 am Link to this comment

I want to be very clear: I will not sign on to any health plan that adds to our deficits over the next decade. And by helping improve quality and efficiency, the reforms we make will help bring our deficits under control in the long-term.

  Those who oppose reform will also tell you that under our plan, you won’t get to choose your doctor - that some bureaucrat will choose for you. That’s also not true. Michelle and I don’t want anyone telling us who our family’s doctor should be - and no one should decide that for you either. Under our proposals, if you like your doctor, you keep your doctor. If you like your current insurance, you keep that insurance. Period, end of story.

  Finally, opponents of health reform warn that this is all some big plot for socialized medicine or government-run health care with long lines and rationed care. That’s not true either. I don’t believe that government can or should run health care. But I also don’t think insurance companies should have free reign to do as they please.

  That’s why any plan I sign must include an insurance exchange: a one-stop shopping marketplace where you can compare the benefits, cost and track records of a variety of plans - including a public option to increase competition and keep insurance companies honest - and choose what’s best for your family. And that’s why we’ll put an end to the worst practices of the insurance industry: no more yearly caps or lifetime caps; no more denying people care because of pre-existing conditions; and no more dropping people from a plan when they get too sick. No longer will you be without health insurance, even if you lose your job or change jobs.

  The good news is that people who know the system best are rallying to the cause of change. Just this past week, the American Nurses Association, representing millions of nurses across America, and the American Medical Association, representing doctors across our nation, announced their support because they’ve seen first-hand the need for health insurance reform.

  They know we cannot continue to cling to health industry practices that are bankrupting families, and undermining American businesses, large and small. They know we cannot let special interests and partisan politics stand in the way of reform - not this time around.

  The opponents of health insurance reform would have us do nothing. But think about what doing nothing, in the face of ever increasing costs, will do to you and your family.

  So today, I am urging the House and the Senate, Democrats and Republicans, to seize this opportunity, and vote for reform that gives the American people the best care at the lowest cost; that reins in insurance companies, strengthens businesses and finally gives families the choices they need and the security they deserve.

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By MarthaA, July 19, 2009 at 8:35 am Link to this comment

In his weekly address, President Barack Obama called on Congress to seize this opportunity - one that may not come again for decades - and finally pass health care reform. With families unable to keep up with skyrocketing costs, premiums rising three times faster than wages, businesses shedding jobs, and deficits piling up every year, reform simply cannot wait. The American people and the American economy need reform that improves care, lowers costs, strengthens businesses, and gives families the choices and security they deserve.

  Right now in Washington, our Senate and House of Representatives are both debating proposals for health insurance reform. Today, I want to speak with you about the stakes of this debate, for our people and for the future of our nation.

  This is an issue that affects the health and financial well-being of every single American and the stability of our entire economy.

  It’s about every family unable to keep up with soaring out of pocket costs and premiums rising three times faster than wages. Every worker afraid of losing health insurance if they lose their job, or change jobs. Everyone who’s worried that they may not be able to get insurance or change insurance if someone in their family has a pre-existing condition.

  It’s about a woman in Colorado who told us that when she was diagnosed with breast cancer, her insurance company - the one she’d paid over $700 a month to - refused to pay for her treatment. She had to use up her retirement funds to save her own life.

  It’s about a man from Maryland who sent us his story - a middle class college graduate whose health insurance expired when he changed jobs. During that time, he needed emergency surgery, and woke up $10,000 in debt - debt that has left him unable to save, buy a home, or make a career change.

  It’s about every business forced to shut their doors, or shed jobs, or ship them overseas. It’s about state governments overwhelmed by Medicaid, federal budgets consumed by Medicare, and deficits piling higher year after year.

  This is the status quo. This is the system we have today. This is what the debate in Congress is all about: Whether we’ll keep talking and tinkering and letting this problem fester as more families and businesses go under, and more Americans lose their coverage. Or whether we’ll seize this opportunity - one we might not have again for generations - and finally pass health insurance reform this year, in 2009.

  Now we know there are those who will oppose reform no matter what. We know the same special interests and their agents in Congress will make the same old arguments, and use the same scare tactics that have stopped reform before because they profit from this relentless escalation in health care costs. And I know that once you’ve seen enough ads and heard enough people yelling on TV, you might begin to wonder whether there’s a grain of truth to what they’re saying. So let me take a moment to answer a few of their arguments.

  First, the same folks who controlled the White House and Congress for the past eight years as we ran up record deficits will argue - believe it or not - that health reform will lead to record deficits. That’s simply not true. Our proposals cut hundreds of billions of dollars in unnecessary spending and unwarranted giveaways to insurance companies in Medicare and Medicaid. They change incentives so providers will give patients the best care, not just the most expensive care, which will mean big savings over time. And we have urged Congress to include a proposal for a standing commission of doctors and medical experts to oversee cost-saving measures.

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By John Hanks, July 19, 2009 at 8:33 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The extortion will continue as long as we don’t get national health.  We spend more time debating the obvious than we did on Iraq.  Of course the Republicans, Israelis, and Saudis did 911.

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By hippie4ever, July 18, 2009 at 10:55 pm Link to this comment

Whenever I get upset over this particular Obama betrayal, it helps me to remember that American medicine is rubbish anyway. Drug pushers, sleep-deprived doctors, third-world nurses, reused needles, filthy hospitals. Add to that the Frankenstein food and fouled air and water, and is it any wonder the people are so unhealthy?

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By LostHills, July 18, 2009 at 3:03 pm Link to this comment

Obama’s trying to rush through legislation that is going to hurt us immediately and hurt us in the long run. It’s another big give away to the corporatocracy, paid for by the working class, just like his “stimulous” package. Ordering us all to buy medical insurance, and taxing employer provided insurance is not “health care reform.” It’s robbery.

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By rollzone, July 18, 2009 at 12:05 pm Link to this comment

hello. yeah, don’t let this fool you: make no mistake about this- he is speaking between his lips about raising taxes. over taxation and government spending results in everyone going on welfare: and we are declared bankrupt; so they are able to install the new world government, and the global currency. let the corporations that installed him have their profiteering world government: so we can have real targets to shoot at. today they are all offshore shadows manipulating everyone from the outside. i think we should throw him back.

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By John Hanks, July 18, 2009 at 8:34 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

As long as you keep subsidizing the rich, they will take every dollar and make a knife to plunge in your back.  This looks like just more of the same with the crooked insurance companies.

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By PatrickHenry, July 18, 2009 at 7:46 am Link to this comment

We have to start this on a state level much like how Canada had to start their universal health care system, provience to province, territory to territory.

That way the lobbiests influence is lessened and the our paid off congress and senate rendered irrelevent, as they can only vote on state issues as a resident.

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By GB, July 18, 2009 at 7:21 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Anything less than getting single payer is a failure. the republicans didn’t care about the dems when they were forcing through fear and war mongering in bush’s two terms. They actually turned the lights out when dems wanted debates and made them use small meeting rooms in the basement of the Capitol. It’s time for dems to do their jobs and tell republicans you are with the people or you are with the insurance company CEOs and if it’s the later you don’t have the vote, period.

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