Obama: Not Going To Walk Away From Health Reform
New York Times' The Caucus blog: "Conceding his health care overhaul had 'run into a bit of a buzz saw,' President Obama vowed on Friday to keep fighting for legislation that will 'hold the insurance industry accountable and bring more stability and security to folks in our health care system'" (Stolberg, 1/22).
The Wall Street Journal: In prepared remarks, Obama said, "I am not going to walk away just because it's hard. We're going to keep on working to get this done with Democrats, Republicansanyone who is willing to step up." He "didn't say what the eventual legislation would look like. He also didn't elaborate on how he would push a plan through the Senate ...
'I am not going to watch more people get crushed by costs, or denied the care they need by insurance company bureaucrats, or partisan politics, or special interest power in Washington,' he said. He blamed lobbyists, insurance companies and Republicans for derailing the proposal. 'And I'm going to keep up the fight for real, meaningful health insurance reforms,' the speech said. 'That's why we expanded the children's health insurance program to include four million more kids. And that's why I'll continue fighting for reform that will hold the insurance industry accountable and bring more stability and security to folks in our health-care system'" (Williamson, 1/22).
The Hill: Meanwhile, in Washington earlier today after a meeting with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (Ill.), Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.), said of the health reform bill, "There's kind of re-evaluation going on. ... The assessment is not complete and it's not quite clear what is possible at this point in terms of the road forward. I think the White House is part of this same pause." Though some Democrats have expressed interest in starting fresh by crafting a scaled-back measure. "But Senate Democratic leaders have rejected that approach, at least so far. 'The pieces fit together,' said Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.), who has argued against passing reform incrementally" (Bolton, 1/22).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.