October 3rd, 2007
10:19 PM ET
11 years ago

Bush explains veto: 'Poor kids first'

Watch Ed Henry's report on President Bush's veto of a bill that would have expanded a childrens' health insurance program.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Bush kept a promise on Wednesday to veto a bill that would have increased the number of children covered by a state-federal health insurance program. The bill enjoyed bipartisan support and Ed Henry reports on why Bush vetoed the bill and what the political consequences of the veto may be for Bush and the Republican Party.

Related: Democrats begin push to override veto of kids health insurance bill

Filed under: President Bush • SCHIP
soundoff (56 Responses)
  1. Tricia M Charlottetown PEI

    "I believe in private medicine, not the federal government running the health care system. I do want Republicans and Democrats to come together to support a bill that focuses on the poorer children," the president said, adding "the government's policy should be to help people find private insurance."

    Well Private Medicine means dollars to Private Corporations. And his statement on wanting to help poor children certainly doesn't speak to
    "Equality fo All Americans."

    And middle class wage earners who are scarcely above the poverty wage bracket are POOR PEOPLE Mr. President as are they're children.

    And why would Americans need the Government's help in finding Private Insurance Coverage. These companies are advertised through the media daily. They are easy to find just hard to pay for.

    I dont' understand the President's logic on this issue. In Canada we have Medicare and those who wish to also buy into Private Insurance have that choice. But with our Medicare all Children and Middle Class wage earners are automatically covered under Medicare while still having the choice to buy into more Private Coverage. SO I don't get this American Health Program at all.

    Even wage earners above the Middle Class bracket in Canada would find it difficult to pay for even some of the basic health care needs which is why we have Medicare.

    October 4, 2007 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  2. Tom - Dedham, Mass

    If the media would report this story you would all discover that no "poor children" will lose their assistance, but this bill will raise the ceiling to $83,000 (poor?) and increase the age to 25 (children?).

    I will give my next check to the "poor childen, but I wil be damned if that includes people that make $83,000 and 25 year old "kids".

    October 4, 2007 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  3. Ryan Indianapolis

    You Go George, these morons (liberals) dont even know what is going on or have any intellect on this subject, but continue to say the same thing over and over BUSH SUCKS, EVERYTHING IS BUSHS FAULT,,,you people are like a broken record. Please do some research on this bill then you might find ol Nancy and Harry are exploiting the middle class and I for one dont feel I need to pay for some kid in the middle class to have healthcare when their parents could afford it..Liberals are so predictable and such MENTAL MIDGETS,,,

    October 4, 2007 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  4. Robbie Flynn, Nashville, Tennessee

    The next time George Bush asks for 200 billion dollars for Iraq, say hell no, it is too expensive. This is sickening. How can the president sleep at night after vetoing this bill. It doesn't matter to him, he has healthcare.

    October 4, 2007 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  5. bukky, Baltimore, MD

    Yes, the Dems want adults and everyone under this. They are lying to the people again. Wake up, do the homework.

    Posted By Frank Virginia Beach :

    So he's punishing 8 millions kids for a bill that does not exist yet? The bill does not refer to adults... what you are saying is that this is a "pre-emptive" veto

    October 4, 2007 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  6. Scott Austin, TX

    Proof positive that this man has no soul in him.

    October 4, 2007 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  7. JB Boston MA

    All those so intent on making fun of Bush ignore the specifics of the plan. Please address, or continue to show your ignorance.

    1) Covers parents who make up to $83,000
    2) Makes smokers who a large number are poor pay for the increase
    3) He offered to cover up 25 billion but the dems would not compromise.

    I just don't get it.

    I do get that Pelosi and crew are running around saying Bush hates poor people. Since when did making $83,000 make you poor?

    Listen, if you believe ALL children should get free healthcare, that is one thing, but to claim that Bush hates poor when this bill covers, arguably upper middle class people, COME ON.

    And finally, cigarettes? Why not air travel, then more people would be responsible for the cost. And wealthier people travel by air.

    Let's see if a dem has the guts to address or, most likely, will just continue to call Bush names.

    October 4, 2007 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  8. Robert, Vivian, LA

    I hope the VETO gets over-ridden. That way I can drop my son from my private insurance and have the government pay for him!
    Then I can go out and buy a new flat screen TV!

    October 4, 2007 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  9. Deborah, Prairie du chien, WI

    I make less than 1/4 of the proposed $83,000.00 income level in this plan and I still would not expect my neighbors to pay for health insurance for my kids. We have become a society of takers and users. Truly poor sick people should be offered a helping hand but no one deserves to live off the backs of other hard working citizens.

    October 4, 2007 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  10. Tom - Dedham, Mass

    As usual "Jimmy" you are clueless and classless.

    Big people talking here, so you can go into your playpen.

    Bush is not cutting funding for "poor people" as the Democrats are leading us (and LYING) to believe, THEY are expanding this to include people that earn $83,000 (poor?) and people aged 25 (children?).

    I will give my next EARNED paycheck to the "poor children", but I will be damned if I have to pay for the poor ($83,000) and the children (25 years old).

    Phase one of the lying socialists plan is upon us.

    And as pat of the plan is to tax the hell out of smokers to "pay" for it.

    If any of you sheep think for one minute the taxes that are going to be levied on smokers is going to DIRECTLY pay for this, I have a bridge...

    I don't smoke, but why not tax people that buy Twinkies, Dorito's and who purchase BEEF as all lead to obesity.

    If enacted and people do actually "do the right thing" and quit, where is the money going to come from then?

    Didn't think of that... just like Shrillary didn't think of where the money for the "Baby bonds" was going to come from.

    I'll save you the trouble, Bush sucks, now write something relevent about this.

    October 4, 2007 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  11. Jim Cook, White City, Kansas

    Read the provisions of the bill. $83,000 income cap was a proposal made by the State of New York for their state, it was killed. That was at 400% poverty level. Not the 300% cap contained in the bill. Also understand that this is not a Democratic bill, it is a bi-partisan bill, and was rewritten into its current and vetoed form by Republicans. Also I recommended going to Senator Pat Roberts (R-KS) site and listen to his comments on the SChip legislation, not only is he in favor of it, but he belives that the President made up his mind before the final language of the bill was even finished and he also beleives that the decision to veto the bill was made without even reading the final passed bill.

    I will tell you this, if Senator Roberts thinks that it was a error to veto this legislation, I recommend that you rethink your logic. Pat Roberts is not what I would consider a liberal tax and spend democrate, but I would consider him a conservative republican. And he says Bush was Wrong to Veto this legislation.

    October 4, 2007 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  12. Christian, Tampa FL

    Some people on these forums seem to lose perspective.

    We're talking about children here. Ten million CHILDREN. What is so bad about the richest and most powerful nation on the planet deciding to insure ten million children?

    I know there are questions about income-levels, but anyone with a brain knows that lack of insurance can hurt any family, from the lower class to the middle and upper classes.

    Insuring the children through the government means that ten million families won't have to worry about it anymore. What can be so wrong about easing the burden on the American people?

    October 4, 2007 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  13. Robert M. Reidy N.Y.

    I must say if you think that making a combined parental household income of around 85,000 is a lot of money, you are sadly mistaken. This barely covers a lower middle class income where I come from, and why shouldn't the middle class get a break after all they do all the work.
    With the price of commuting, high housing and rent plus the price of medical care, which is still born in part or all by the worker and the cost of child care plus all the other expenses of raising a family even many in the middle class are a pay check away from losing it all if one parent losses a job or gets laid off.
    Once again the Republicans show there cold cold hearts. The rich get richer – to satisfy there sick sense of elitism – they love to look down there nose and go tut.. tut how unfortunate they are.


    October 4, 2007 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  14. Henry Tucker, Ga

    "We're talking about children here. Ten million CHILDREN. What is so bad about the richest and most powerful nation on the planet deciding to insure ten million children? "

    The Government ALREADY insures millions of CHILDREN (medicaid). These proposed kids come from middle class working families. Make insurance easier/cheaper for businesses so employees can have insurance is the solution... NOT another Government program!

    Or do we now live in the United Socialist States of America?

    October 4, 2007 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  15. Mark. Shreveport, LA

    If your household income is $83,000, and you can't afford health insurance, then you don't know how to budget!
    If you CHOOSE to live in a huge house in a well-to-do neighborhood that is a long commute from your job and drive a fancy SUV, that does not entitle you to free health care.

    There are many, MANY places around the country where $84k is a LOT of money and can buy you not only health care but a nice house as well.
    If your location is pricing you out of health care, move to a cheaper location or buy a cheaper house.

    October 4, 2007 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  16. Deborah, Prairie du chien, WI

    Once again, let's try personal fiscal responsibility. Let's make a choice. 1/2 million dollar house,$ 30,000.00 SUV or insurance for your kids? Once the smoker's tax dries up what's next? the drinker's tax, the eater's tax how about a tax on the air you breathe? Maybe we should tax all people that purchase chinese imports then we could fund health care for the world.

    October 4, 2007 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  17. Jennifer, Houston, TX

    It seems to me a lot of these "facts" being thrown around come straight from right wing talk radio. Some actual facts you might like to consider:

    *New Congressional Budget Office estimates show that by 2012, a total of 3.8 million children who otherwise would be uninsured would have health care coverage under the bipartisan agreement reauthorizing the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) developed by House and Senate negotiators.

    *CBO consequently estimates that a total of about 3.2 million of these 3.8 million children — or 84 percent of them — are children who have incomes below the current eligibility limits that states have set.

    Finally, the $80,000 income level being tossed about here is incorrect:

    Senator Grassley told the Des Moines Register that the President was incorrect to claim that the emerging agreement would include coverage up to that income level. (CongressDaily quotes Senator Grassley as stating that the President’s “understanding of our bill is wrong, and I would urge the president to reconsider his veto message based upon the bill we might pass, not something that some staffer has told him wrongly about our bill.”)

    Just though y'all might like to know that.

    October 4, 2007 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |

    President Bush is continuing to display his pathological moronic behavior. This man has to be the most ignorant person to ever get elected president. How could we have made such a COSTLY mistake.
    I would hope that Democrats vilify and demonize this pitiful moron for the rest of his life. For the misery he has caused here in the USA and in Iraq, he doesn't merit any respect. NONE..MAY GOD SAVE US AND THE WORLD FROM THIS IDIOT.

    October 4, 2007 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  19. JB Boston MA


    Your argument (or statement) is simply what harm is there in insuring 10 million children. I agree. My next question to you is this, "why should only smokers pay for it?"

    Full disclosure, I smoke a pack a week, won't really hurt me (the 61 cent tax, of course the cigs will), but fair is fair. Only those who smoke should have the right to comment on the bill.

    Finally, $83,000 and age 25 is absurd. Period. That is not poor, low income, or middle class. I hate to make generalizations but, I am sure those parents are not making smart decisions if they can't pay for Health insurance. Why should I be penalized for others bad decisions?

    October 4, 2007 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  20. Sarah Bent, Kansas City, MO

    It does not matter what a lot of think about 'big, bad, socialized medicine' it is coming. We can not afford the system that we have now.

    And to those of you who think socialized medicine is bad, what do you think medicare is? You pay for that now and that tax will have to be increased soon too. And before you start howling, remember your elderly parents and grandparents receive it now. If it were eliminated (some of you seem to think medicare is bad too) you might end up having to take care of their healthcare out of your own pocket. You think your taxes are high now, wait till you have to do that.

    By the way, a lot of you seem to think that it is only poor people who smoke. I see a lot of twenty and thirty somethings smoking all the time. Go to any bar here on a Friday or Saturday night and the smoke will kill you. Also, this will not cover parents it is only children. $80,000 a year may sound like a lot if you live in the south but in places California, Mass., Alaska, to name a few, that is not much for a family of 4.

    October 4, 2007 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  21. David, Gilbert Arizona

    Posted By Amy, FL: "I would rather my tax dollars go to children's health care here than to a far away country that doesn't even want us there..."

    **News Flash**
    Your tax dollars already go to children's health care. CHIP is an existing health care program. Bush's veto did not end the program. He veto'd the expansion of the program which would have covered middle class children and adults up to the age of 25.

    The legislation also included a provision to cover some households in New York who make up to $83,000 annually.

    If your family is earning $75,000 by your example and they cannot afford health care for their children then they aren't very responsible parents.

    I work with a woman who makes $60,000 and is a single parent of two boys. She has no problem providing her children with health care coverage unsubsidized by the government.

    Most of the posts here are nothing more than another knee jerk reaction to a headline without doing any research on their own. Typical

    October 4, 2007 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  22. Tully, San Leandro, CA

    Sometimes I have to wonder if this man have a conscience or he's just a lunatic?

    October 4, 2007 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  23. brenda mon cty

    Oh and for the people who keep making statements such as this law provides medical coverage for children in homes making up to $83,000 a year – here's a little reality check for you, brought to you by factcheck.org, endorsed by none other than Dick Cheney...


    October 4, 2007 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  24. Randy S. Lawton, OK

    Congress is taking the entirely wrong tack on this issue. Instead of expanding the SCHIP to pay for 25 year old kids whose parents make $83K a year. How about going after the pharmaceutical and insurance industry? After all, that's why health insurance costs so much in the first place. That's where the system is broken, SCHIP is just a finger in the dike.
    Oh, silly me, I forgot that those two industries own Capitol Hill.

    October 4, 2007 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  25. Poor Robert, Marietta, GA

    Yes, poor kids first....and Bush and the Republicans are making more and more kids poor every day.

    October 4, 2007 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
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