December 11th, 2008
11:41 AM ET
9 years ago

Daschle is Obama's pick for health care point man

Obama announced the pick of Daschle Thursday.

Obama announced the pick of Daschle Thursday.

CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama picked former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle for two important roles Thursday - secretary of Health and Human Services and director of the White House Office of Health Reform.

"He will be responsible not just for implementing our health care plan. He will also be the lead architect of that plan," Obama said, calling Daschle "one of America's foremost health care experts."

"If we want to overcome our economic challenges, we must also finally address our health care challenge," Obama said. Appearing at a press conference with Obama, Daschle said it is "so exciting" to take on the dual role not just to implement reform "but helping to generate it."

"We have the most expensive health care system in the world, but are not the healthiest nation in the world," Daschle said.

"Our growing costs are unsustainable, and the plight of the uninsured is unconscionable," he said.
"Addressing our health care challenges will not only mean healthier and longer lives for millions, it will also make American companies more competitive, address the cause of half of all of our personal bankruptcies and foreclosures and help pull our economy out of its current tailspin."

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Filed under: Tom Daschle
soundoff (84 Responses)


    December 11, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  2. BibleFreak

    I am clueless about Tom D. other than the fact that W and Chen ey worked really hard to kick him out. I hope he is good. He seems like a decent man.

    December 11, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  3. strong

    Obama is picking the same old people, the same old faces. Old retreads.

    So is that the "change" you were talking about?

    December 11, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  4. Tulsa

    Good choice Mr. President elect.
    Daschle knows how the Congress works, knows healthcare well and is well liked and respected by both sides.
    Get the drug companies and insurance companies out of the policy making and we'll all be better for it.

    ps... April,
    Sheesh, get a life. If you don't have a clue, don't write an opinion.

    December 11, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  5. Scott Tucson

    And just what makes Daschle such an expert on health care?
    Oh yeah! he was a lobbiest for the drug industry and wrote a book on health care.

    December 11, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  6. Sue T

    Obama is putting together a great team........hope for the future. While all the scandle is running rampid about the Ill. Gov. just remember Republicans, we both have some crooked people in office probably more than we know........but before you throw stones at the Democrats, clean out your own closets......the next scandle could come from your GOP party......make your words soft and sweet, you never know from day to day which ones you'll have to eat. From the past Republicans we have seen a man that was emailing young pages looking to have sex with them.......drug abuse.......and many other dispicable crimes..........yes the Democrats have a few bad apples, but Republicans have theirs too.

    December 11, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  7. Mobius

    Just when we thought the country had the good sense to be RID of this man, Barry brings him back in. Lovely.

    December 11, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  8. BibleFreak

    You know, Jesus walked among the DEAD, living, deaf, mute, disabled, lost, helpless, and notorious corrupted taxpayers and corrupted religious officials (Sadducees and Pharisees). In that walk, he provided hope and help through faith in God. He changed the world. He knew his purpose and was not corrupted.

    On the other hand, Obama walked among the lost, the poor, disabled and helpless and corrupted officials in Chicago. In that walk, he knew his purpose, to change America and create a better world.

    So, just leave Obama alone.

    December 11, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  9. Rob R

    Well I hope he does something. I just had to pay $1,200 for my 2 year old son to be hooked up to IV fluids for 3 days because of a bad stomach virus. And that was AFTER my company health insurance. If you don't have health insurance then you are really screwed in this country, and if you do have it, it is really nothing more than a coupon.

    Health care should be a right for all people. It's not like buying big screen TV's which are a luxury. People don't CHOOSE to get cancer or ashtma or a stroke. People don't wake up and decide, "Hey I think it would be fun to get sick and go into the hospital for a few days."

    He better fix it.

    December 11, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  10. Baze

    It takes more than just throwing money or "reforming" the health care system in order to improve it. It will also take a reformation of the American outlook on health.

    December 11, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  11. BibleFreak

    I believe that we can be with people of all sorts of walk, but God has given each of us, the will to be what we want to become. When we know our purpose, nothing can dim that light.

    Bush walked among the elites and his dad was even a former Prez. This didnt help him serve with a purpose to change American and the world for better.

    It just really depends on the man. Bottomline, we can be seen with people, but we define our own path.

    December 11, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  12. tired of corporate politics

    Nice to see someone finally acting on Hillary's idea of universal health care. Guess that is how it works – a woman comes up with the idea but a man takes credit for it.

    At least it is happening – glad to see Obama is supportive of this.

    December 11, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  13. Mike in Texas

    Tom Daschle is "one of America's foremost health care experts"?

    Daschle was a democratic politician. He is not an expert.

    This is an example of the Dillusional appointing the Ignorant.

    We'll have to wait for 2010 for real change in America.

    December 11, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  14. JuanM

    LOL...isn't Daschle the former Senate Majority leader that got booted out of office in 2004? That's funny. he has almost no experience in the health care industry. So how is he the "foremost health care expert?" What an idiot. The Dems and Repubs have screwed up this country something bad. This looks like more of the same to me. We, as a country, will continue to get screwed by these two corrupt parties.

    December 11, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  15. karen-phoenix

    Good choice as are all of them!!! Love the choice for Energy–Looked the man up and he is brilliant!!! Obama is surrounding himself with very, very intellegent and educated people--soo good for America!!!

    December 11, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  16. Southerner

    The reason we aren't the healthiest nation in the world has nothing to do with the quality of our healthcare.

    We eat horribly and don't exercise. Most of us are overweight, some of use morbidly so.We eat too much fat, too many calories and too few vegetables. Too many of us smoke, use harmfull drugs and/or drink excessively.

    Having high quality healthcare cannot make up for our unhealthy lifestlyes. In fact, it is our unhealthy lifestyles that are causing us to spend so much on healthcare.

    December 11, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  17. BS not Maverick

    Obama needs rebuke and get rid of anyone that does stupid stuff in public, like the guy (speech writer) that took a picture holding Hillary Clintons breast on the cut out of her. Everyone is watching and just waiting for a chance to jump on the new admin. Not only that but most people are sick and tired of stupidity from the current admin. Set the tempo Obama or you will regret it later.

    December 11, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  18. obama-mama

    We are in need in better healthcare. I believe he will do a great job.

    December 11, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  19. Simmy

    I approve, with great enthusiasm!

    December 11, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  20. demwit

    Back to the Future, part 4..

    December 11, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  21. Dayahka

    One of the principal problems of the health care system is that much of it is for-profit–there is not much profit in prevention, only in expensive operations. To fix this system, the for-profit element has got to be removed. The other principal problem with current health care is that it is based on a doctor-as-drug-pusher model, with the pharmaceuticals developing toxic and mainly useless drugs which are very expensive and doctors pushing those drugs. Of course, a drug-crazed populace with many people downing expensive pills like sugared water is another problem. If Daschle fixes these two main problems, he will have a viable health care system–otherwise, same old, same old.

    December 11, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  22. David in Dallas

    I know Obama catches some heat from the far left for not having enough fresh blood in his administration, but really, W appointed many Washington outsiders to his administration, and the resulting damage they did to our nation during their first few years while they learned the ropes were profound. Most of Bush's negative legacy stems from the first 3 years. His last 5 have been relatively steady.

    And the first Democratic effort at the enormously complicated and politically difficult task of reforming health care didn't go so well the first time, when it was handed off to a (at the time) Washington outsider: Hillary Clinton.

    Kudos to Obama for not repeating the mistakes of the past.

    December 11, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  23. Dad of a Diabetic

    I hope that Sen. Daschle and President Obama can do something for the children who are uninsurable. My son has type 1 diabetes, and will go off of my health insurance in a few years. I have several letters from health insurance companies saying that he is uninsurable. When he becomes an adult, my son will not be able to get private health insurance for any amount of money. I fear for his life when he no longer is covered by my health insurance. My state has a high risk pool for the uninsurable, but there is a waiting list and the cost for a young man with diabetes is $400+ a month for base coverage. If a man has a daughter , in her 20's, with diabetes, then the cost is over $1200 a month for the high risk insurance. Insulin cost pennies to make but it cost the diabetic about $100 a bottle. My son will use 3 or more bottles a month. President Bush has done nothing for these uninsurable children, except to slow an avenue of research that could cure them.

    December 11, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  24. LIP

    in the other blog for Tom Daschle, a blogger tried to link him to a murdered mistress in DC. This was Chandra Levy who disappeared in 2001 and was a mistress to US Rep., Gary Condit and had no connection to Tom Daschle.
    Tom Daschle served SD as a state Senator and served well and is another of Obama's excellent choices.

    December 11, 2008 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  25. Cori from Colorado

    Please, work on Universal Health Care for American's. I can't afford my co-pays for geezes sake! As stated above, we have the most expensive health care system in the world, but are not the healthiest, so let's do something about it NOW.

    December 11, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
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