July 21st, 2009
03:29 PM ET
5 years ago

Hoyer: House could leave without health care vote

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer signaled Tuesday that the House could leave for its August recess before it votes on health care reform.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer signaled Tuesday that the House could leave for its August recess before it votes on health care reform.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer signaled Tuesday that the House of Representatives could leave for its month-long break in August without voting on health care reform.

"If we can get consensus, we're going to move. If we can't get consensus we're going to continue to work on creating consensus," Hoyer told reporters.

He added that he doesn't think it is "necessarily necessary" for the House to stay in session into August to continue working on health care legislation.

His words were in contrast to those of Rep. Henry Waxman a week ago, when House Democrats unveiled their version of the health care bill before sending it to three committees for consideration. "We quite frankly cannot go home for a recess," said Waxman, chairman of one of those committees, "unless the House and Senate both pass bills to reform and restructure our health care system."

Hoyer said Democrats still want to pass a bill next week and will continue to discuss changes to the proposal. "We'll see," he said. "I'll make that decision next week, I'm not going to make it now."

The majority leader also conceded that concerns about the current House bill are not limited to a group of conservative "Blue Dog" Democrats who have publicly stated their opposition to the bill.

"It's not just Blue Dogs. I want to make it very clear - progressives, Blue Dogs and everybody in between has expressed concerns, and we're working on that," Hoyer said.

– CNN's Lisa Desjardins contributed to this report.


Filed under: Health care • Steny Hoyer
soundoff (84 Responses)
  1. Steph

    What? I get to worry about how I'm paying my medical bills while everyone in Congress goes on vacation! Stay there until you get the job done!

    July 21, 2009 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  2. He's Selfish To The End

    I'm really ticked off about the governor of South Carolina because he doesn't get it. Why on earth would he stay on? We are bombarded with twits like Sanford and Blagojevitch and Burris, who are only looking out for themselves and no one else. They don't get it. Move on Governor Selfish, do the country and your family a favor.

    July 21, 2009 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  3. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    I think the President should block Congress' recess until a bill is passed through the House. Mr. Stoyer along with the rest of the House can put their vacations on hold.

    July 21, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    Seems appropriate. Obama is doing his job by cracking the whip on these do-nothing fools (both parties) in Congress. If we left them to their own devices, they'd be whizzing in the wind with legislation about Jacko and Chuck E. Cheese instead of moving on health care and immigration reform (yes, you just wait GOPers, that' s coming).

    July 21, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  5. GI Joe

    They want a vacation after doing nothing? Fine. Let's vote next year to send them on a permanent vacation.

    NEXT

    July 21, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  6. Polar Bears Against Palin

    Another lazy, conservative Democrat trying to avoid passing real health care. I wish I could have a month long recess from my job.
    What a bunch of disgusting bums.

    July 21, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  7. Jon Krieger

    Why is Obama ignoring the will of the people on this?Half of the country and even members of his own party are against this thing!But,he is still trying to cram it down our throats!slooooow down mr president!

    July 21, 2009 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  8. Wake-me-when-it's-over

    President Obama's insistence on passing Health Care Legislation with an impossible deadline, is just one more example of his ego centered mental impairment. He should care about getting it right, not just getting it. He isn't getting it. Americans will overcome his attempted rape of the country. The Democrats who are blindly following him, are guilty too, because they are tying our hands and feet.
    Some uber-liberals are even enjoying the process of watching, as
    we are beaten down. Take heart reasonable people, we have a voice, we can scream, and we can fight back. Vote Republican 2010

    July 21, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  9. dave

    You know this is a disgrace. I wonder if you put people in there who knows how it feel not to have health care would they go home on vacation without a bill?

    July 21, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  10. Obama Victim

    seems hey are looking for a way out from this diaster...only thing left is to lose big time in the mid-terms..............Hillary to challenge Barry...and inaugurate Romney................sounds about right

    July 21, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  11. Proud Member..Party of No

    "During the call, a blogger from Maine said he kept running into an Investors Business Daily article that claimed Section 102 of the House health legislation would outlaw private insurance. He asked: “Is this true? Will people be able to keep their insurance and will insurers be able to write new policies even though H.R. 3200 is passed?” President Obama replied: “You know, I have to say that I am not familiar with the provision you are talking about.”
    __________________________________________________

    Wow! Obama himself hasn't even read the bill and doesn't know what's in it. lolol....man, this presidency has turned into a regular comedy hour. For awhile I was upset at the things he's doing. Now it's downright hilarious.

    July 21, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  12. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    There is opposition to Obama's plan across the political spectrum. He needs to institute the savings piece first and prove his numbers aren't all hype (like the mythical 3 million jobs to be created by the stimulus). Only after he has the cash in hand should it be spent. His promises are worthless and his numbers are fiction. 44% approve of what he's doing and 50% disapprove. That's a bigger margin than his 'landslide' in Nov.

    July 21, 2009 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  13. Mike O

    You mean they might have to wait until all of it is actually written before they pass it?? Next thing you know, people will expect Congresspeople, and even the President, to actually READ the bill! How ridiculous!

    It's even been rumored that some people want Congress to actually participate in the government plan! They actually expect Representatives to put up with what will be required of the Unwashed ??

    July 21, 2009 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  14. Tulsa

    Get this done. It has been long overdue.
    Don't go on recess untill it is hammered out.
    This is the business you were voted in to cary out.
    Put your petty differences aside and do what is right for the future of the country.

    July 21, 2009 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  15. jon krieger

    Why is Obama ignoring the will of the people on this?Half the country and members of his own party are against this thing!And yet he's still trying to ram it down our throats!Sloooow down mr president!

    July 21, 2009 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  16. phoenix86

    House democrats should do Americans a favor and DO THEIR JOB. Read and debate this debacle before ramming another tax and inefficienet program down the throat of the taxpayer.

    Go home and talk to your constituents – if you dare.

    July 21, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  17. gt

    hang tough blue dogs

    July 21, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  18. bozo the obama

    finally,good news for the middle class taxpayers.

    July 21, 2009 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  19. Mississippi Mike

    Good, it will give our legislators time to actually READ the bill. Any time someone wants you to sign something without actually reading it you should be very concerned.

    July 21, 2009 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  20. kgeukes

    Get it done or lose your job!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 21, 2009 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  21. Chad

    Message to House Republicans and Democrats pass real Healthcare reform and dont take a break if you are serious about one of the most critical issues facing our country right now please stay and get this done for our country.

    July 21, 2009 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  22. Jimmy the Greek

    Quotes from Hoyer,

    "If we can't get consensus we're going to continue to work on creating consensus"

    "he doesn't think it is "necessarily necessary" for the House to stay in session..."

    __________

    I think this guy just out-Biden'd Joe Biden!

    Liberals railed about W's speeches for 8 years. Have you libs heard any of YOUR leaders???

    Obama visiting 57 States.
    Obama admitting he didn't exactly know what was in the Healthcare bill he was pushing to be passed.
    Pelosi reading "her statement" about CIA briefings from que-cards.
    Joe Biden giving Israel the Green Light.
    Obama not giving the Green Light.

    The list goes on and on and on.....

    July 21, 2009 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  23. Terry from West Texas

    This man has been a Congressman for more than 25 years. Many of his colleagues have been in Congress for a decade or two. During that time, they have not thought through, apparently, what kinds of actions Congress could take to make health care more affordable and accessible to everyone. What have they been thinking about? Didn't they think that one day they might have a majority and one day they might have a chance to make improvements in health care?

    What does he have to do back home in his district that is more important to his constituents than providing all of them with health care. The longer they stall, the less likely it is that anything will happen. I'd prefer a vote so I can see where my Congressman stands. Then when he comes back home, I'll tell him what I think of his vote.

    July 21, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  24. guy

    I think we should lock the doors until their job is done.Or we should lock the doors and do the job ourselves, and we keep them there as their jail.

    July 21, 2009 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  25. The Lonely Libertarian of Liverpool NY

    A month off of work, sweet how do i get a job like that? here in the real world I get five weeks a year, but over the last forty years of downsizing we have learned that the ones let go first are the ones who take vacations. here in the real world you are expected to be an hour early, work through lunch and stay two hours late everyday seven days a week. And if one of the dozen or so executives for each employee calls your cell phone at 2 AM you better be awake and ready to answer, or it will be pink slip for you at the end of the next quarter.
    CNN reported that at the end of August while these public sevants are vacationing, 65% of those on unemployment will run out of benifits. Now that should lower the unemployment percentage and they all can slap each other's back for the quick recovery.

    July 21, 2009 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
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