KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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Obama Returns To Message Of Hope In Final State Of The Union

With only passing mentions of policy initiatives, President Barack Obama used his last State of the Union more to address the nation than Congress. He painted a bright picture of the country's standing and called on Americans to replace him with someone who would continue to carry out his reforms on health care, climate change and Iran, among others.

The Associated Press: Obama Summons Americans To Compromise And Change
Addressing a hostile Republican-led Congress and a country plunged in a tumultuous, at times angry presidential campaign, Obama used his final State of the Union address to summon an affirmative vision of his administration and for the future. ... Obama defended his health measure Tuesday night, claiming that millions have gained coverage "and our businesses have created jobs every single month since it became law." Delivering the GOP response, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley reiterated the party's pledge to "end a disastrous health care program, and replace it with reforms." (1/13)

The Washington Post: Obama Urges Nation Not To Fear Future
Obama gave passing mention to a handful of policy priorities — including promoting trade, curbing prescription-drug abuse, reforming the criminal-justice system and curing cancer — but he devoted more of the speech to talking to the nation rather than the House and Senate members before him. (Mufson and Eilperin, 1/13)

The New York Times: In State Of The Union Address, Obama Confronts Americans’ Fears
President Obama on Tuesday set forth an ambitious vision for America’s future but conceded his own failure to heal the political divisions holding back progress, calling it a lasting disappointment of his tenure. “It’s one of the few regrets of my presidency, that the rancor and suspicion between the parties has gotten worse instead of better,” Mr. Obama said, adding that “a president with the gifts of Lincoln or Roosevelt might have better bridged the divide.” (Davis and Shear, 1/12)

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