Health Care Summit

Portrayals Of President Obama At Health Care Summit: Totally Distorted!

I have not had the chance yet to watch the six to seven hours of the Health Care Summit at Blair House, but I have seen excerpts of it online, and it is clear that some news media have painted President Obama’s participation in a very distorted manner!

According to Rush Limbaugh early yesterday afternoon, Obama had pursed lips and was angry at House Minority Whip Eric Cantor of Virginia, who read from portions of the congressional bills while having them stacked in front of his face to demonstrate the size in pages of the bills.

When John McCain complained about the unfairness of the bill to his constituents in Arizona as compared to Florida and other states, Obama was depicted in news reports as involved in an angry response to his former rival, declaring that the election was over, and it was time to do something on the issue of health reform for the American people, rather than harp on the process!

Having seen these excerpts, I fail to see the portrayal of Obama as anywhere near accurate!

Obama was simply making clear that the desire of the Republicans to destroy all of the many hours of work on health care would not be allowed to occur!

When one realizes that there were hundreds of briefings; dozens of caucus meetings; hundreds of hours of hearings; many weeks of markups in five committees; 25 days of consecutive Senate meetings in the month of December; sixty full hours of Senate debate after cloture was voted twice; and that it passed both Houses once already;–when is enough enough? It is time for action to cut down the unnecessary 45,000 deaths a year caused by lack of health care coverage for millions of Americans!

President Obama was simply being assertive and firm, and acting like a leader. This is his challenge to show leadership in a similar way that John F. Kennedy showed toward the steel industry in 1962; that Dwight D. Eisenhower demonstrated in the Little Rock intervention in 1957; that Lyndon Johnson made clear in the fight over the Civil Rights Act of 1964; and that many other Presidents who have been seen as successful have had to demonstrate!

The propaganda machine churns on, but it is clear that President Obama handled himself very well at the Health Care Summit, and that soon, the Democrats will move to final action on the Health Care Reform Act of 2010!

“Reconciliation” And Health Care Legislation: Time For Action!

As the Health Care Summit is about to occur on Thursday, it is clear that the Obama Administration intends to use “reconciliation” if the Republicans refuse to budge on the issue, which is seen as extremely likely.

The statement by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell that such action would be “unprecedented” is pure propaganda, as it has been used under earlier Presidents.

But also research shows that the Children’s Health Care program and expansion of Medicaid to more children, and many other extensions of Medicare coverage have been brought about by “reconciliation” since the Reagan Administration onward.

So after the summit tomorrow, IF the GOP refuses to cooperate, it is time to follow that tactic, and if need be, use Vice President Joe Biden to break a tie, as Al Gore broke a tie on the Clinton economic plan in 1993, which led to the greatest period of economic expansion in US History in the 1990s.

Enough of bipartisanship, which requires both parties to cooperate! If the Republicans don’t, then do what must be done to extend health care to many millions of Americans who are entitled to have the same access to health care that Dick Cheney and Bob Dole are receiving right now!

A Federal Agency To Regulate Health Insurance Premium Increases A Great Step Forward!

The health insurance industry is running amuck with tremendous jumps in premiums, which will force many middle and lower class citizens to have to drop health care, just at a time when there is a great need to expand coverage to millions, who have none at all.

Therefore, the announcement that President Obama is calling for a health insurance commission to have the power to control premium increases in the public interest is an important step to curb the runaway inflation on health care!

Of course, many Republicans will say it is “socialism”, but actually it really is an extension of REGULATION in the public interest, as we cannot allow corporations to forestall the essential passage of health insurance controls on rates, that allow citizens to insure what all of us are entitled to at birth: good health care!

This is one step in preparation for the Health Care Summit at Blair House this Thursday, but already the GOP is indicating it will refuse to back controls on health care costs. It will be interesting to see how this Thursday event plays itself out!

Bipartisan Health Care Summit Called By President Obama

President Obama has just taken the step to welcome Republicans in Congress to a bipartisan summit on February 25, to be televised live.

This is a good step, and will test the Republicans as to whether there will be any cooperation by that party toward some form of health care legislation.

It will be interesting to see if the GOP tries to evade the summit, or will in some way, attempt to undermine it.

Stay tuned for the reaction by Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, Michael Steele et a!