July 22nd, 2009
09:24 AM ET
5 years ago

Source says some Democrats frustrated with health bill

President Obama says political motives are behind the Republicans' opposition to the Democrats' plans.
President Obama says political motives are behind the Republicans' opposition to the Democrats' plans.

(CNN) - As President Obama prepares to address the nation in a primetime news conference, some sources say Democratic grumbling about his plan for health care is growing louder.

One Democratic senator told CNN that some congressional Democrats are "baffled," and another senior Democratic source told CNN that those members are frustrated that that they're not getting more specific direction from him on health care.

"We appreciate the rhetoric and his willingness to ratchet up the pressure but what most Democrats on the Hill are looking for is for the president to weigh in and make decisions on outstanding issues," a senior Democratic congressional source said.

"Instead of sending out his people and saying the president isn't ruling anything out, members would like a little bit of clarity on what he would support - especially on how to pay for his health reform bill," the source added.

The Democratic leadership had hoped the work going on behind closed doors for months could bear fruit in time for the president's news conference Wednesday night.

But multiple Democratic sources told CNN that's looking very unlikely, and one senior Democratic source said some Democratic leaders are frustrated that Senate negotiators have, "repeatedly missed deadlines."

The fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition of Democrats said Tuesday night that they reached one breakthrough on controlling the cost of health care at a meeting with Obama, House Energy and Commerce Chairman Henry Waxman and other House Democrats.

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soundoff (98 Responses)
  1. Right Leaning Independent

    Democrats are not the only ones frustrated with the bill!!! They may be frustrated for different reasons but we are all frustated by it being rammed down our throats without it being read and debated. Not to mention that Obama had a meeting in June to discuss a bill to provide legal status to illegal aliens. If this happens, in late 2009 or early 2010 as they discussed, 12 million illegal aliens could become eligible for health care paid for by the American tax payer!!! There are a variety of reasons he is trying to pass this so fast and this is one of them!

    July 22, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  2. Dave

    Guess it's just not those mean old Republicans – very glad to see some reasonable & realistic thinking coming from the Democratic party on Health Care reform. EVERYONE agrees we need to fix our Health Insurance and Cost problems, what we don't agree is on how to accomplish the very tough tasks.

    Tax all Health Care benefits, and that means unions & ALL workers, and strcitly limit the ability to sue doctors, hospitals, drug & and medical equipment manufactuers, insurance companies and anyone else in the Health Care industry. This WILL cut costs and provide the funding needed to provide assistance to those who can't afford Health Insurance.

    July 22, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  3. Johnny the Boy

    Another useless prime time address to try and explain why the Chosen must must be obeyed. Maybe he can spread the word via Twitter, another Al Gore invention.

    Oh yeah, how's that Gitmo closing working out for you. Tough to find out that those terrorists are really bad guys.

    July 22, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  4. Capt. Snarky

    I think you'll find most of America (on both sides of the aisle) are frustrated with the health care reform debate. I have no issue with trying to reign in costs, but adding another entitlement program isn't going to do anything but RAISE health care costs. Not to mentions the ridiculous notion that the government can "manage" anything cost effectively (For you liberals, that means without waste).

    July 22, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  5. Fla.

    What kind of journalistic integrity is this, CNN? You will not identify the supposed "source." Divisive, sensationalized media? C'mon, CNN is better than that.

    Anyhow, many Americans are baffled & frustrated that healthcare reform has not passed, yet, considering it has been several years in the making.

    Congress needs to get the healthcare legislation approved now for the American people, as we elected them to do.

    July 22, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  6. AndrewCPA

    If this is something he wants why is he not providing input? My guess is he does not want to take the fall for this if it fails... he wants to pass the blame onto Congress, but if he could it would be Bush or the Republicans.

    July 22, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  7. Obama Victim

    Obozo can't even keep his own party in line...............of course he is an empty suit, so no real surprise

    July 22, 2009 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  8. Scott L

    Gee imagine that.

    According to Rahm, Obama is going to claim they fixed the economy in his speech tonight.

    What a joke. Economy is going to tank in Q3 and he will look like GW Bush and his "Mission Accomplished" banner.

    July 22, 2009 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  9. drew

    I hope this begins to show the country's Democrats that even there party is capable of failing to get the job done. While I understand the Democrats' wishes to do what the President wants, I also can't help but feel that these people are supposed to be competent enough to know what's best for the country without having Obama hold their hands.
    I'm not speaking as an opponent of one party or another. I merely think that this should serve as a sobering reminder to Democrat fanatics that their party is far from perfect.

    July 22, 2009 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  10. steven harnack

    do they want him to write the bill and send it to them for their signature?or have lobbyists been writing bills for them for so long that they've forgotten how to do it?

    July 22, 2009 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  11. RealityKing

    Hopes and dreams are precieved reality, actual accomplishment takes a lot more substance. Substance that Obama clearly lacks in leadership ability..

    July 22, 2009 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  12. Four and The Door

    It is prudent for Obama to hang his hat on the," Let's change the status quo" argument at this time rather than get specific about what the health care will actually look like and how it will be paid for.

    For instance, it was easy enough for him to win the election by making specific promises but when he had to change them after inauguration he took a lot of heat. He's learning. He's not just a Junior Senator anymore!

    July 22, 2009 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  13. mike,texas

    How anyone can say we don,t want health care like England or Canada is nuts.They dont go broke from health care costs.Where are all the stories and bodies from poor health care.Next they will tell you terrorism is our biggest problem.Dick and Bush are gone they where the terrorists,problem solved.It could take more than 8 years to fix what bush and the republicans have done to this country.Obama can't bankrupt the US the republicans alredy beat him to it.Remember TARP.

    July 22, 2009 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  14. Jerry American

    Quick , vote on the bill before you know what's in it fools-what a joke this president is

    July 22, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  15. carlos

    why are the repugnant reptiles against the Health Care proposal?...if they can think for a minute (doubt it) the will greatly benefit for their mental illness coverage-ALL OF THEM without exception.
    Just read the ignorant, hateful, senseless comments of the swampy dwellers-NUTTY

    July 22, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  16. annie s

    I'm frustrated too, but not with the President, who I think has been clear since the campaign on what he wanted in a comprehensive health care reform bill. I'm frustrated that these people in Congress can't get it right and get it DONE. Forget the Republicans – no one ever expected them to get on board. The Democrats, however, seem determined to throw the President under the bus when it's their own incompetence and inability to show a united front that is weakening the public' s support of this desperately needed reform. They are an absolute disgrace, and I will certainly remember it come the next elections.

    July 22, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  17. Shawn - GA

    The whitehouse is killing this because they are not providing any details, they are hoping on the "Hope and change" wave to carry it.

    It is obvious and very scary that there is a LOT of people who want this passed simply because they think it will be helpful. The problem is that they have no idea what the details are... how can you rally behind something without knowing anything about it.

    Example: When questioned about a provision in the bill that appears would not allow insurance companies to write coverage on a private level.. President Obama had no idea about that.

    I can not for the life of me understand why the Whitehouse is pushing this so hard and why so many people are following in kind without any idea of the details or how this will be paid for.

    God Bless America, her people and her President.

    July 22, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  18. Fed up in SC

    Obama, I voted for you but you are spending too much and I am starting to wonder did I do the right thing. Why didn't you guys vote to give Americans some of that bail out money instead of bailing out these companies that are still sinking? Is it not the citizens of this country who make the econmoy what it is? Who is bailing me out when my bills are due?

    Politicians held the saying "the rich get richer while the poor get poorer" true to its word. What is $400 a year going to do for the middle class. Depending on what part of the country you live in that his a light bill for a month. What are you doing for the middle class we can't afford everyday living expenses as it is so why throw health care in the mix at this time. Fix the economy and put stipulations on these insurance companies making all this money then health care wouldn't be such an issue. Oh wait a minute we live in America and it makes sense so why do it.

    July 22, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  19. Scott, Tucson

    Obama doesn't even know whats in his health care bill and he expects to dump this on us? Obama's urgency to get this bill signed is that the longer it sits out there, the more that we the people learn all the dirty little details.

    July 22, 2009 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  20. jaye

    "Sources say" seems to be the norm lately.
    I'll wait and hear what President Obama says during his news conference tonight.

    July 22, 2009 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  21. Zero.

    If Barack Obama had been in the whitehouse whenever?

    Every Black (so called African)American would have been innocent of everything....

    July 22, 2009 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  22. Ron L

    Tonight is the night the President HAS TO step and spell out some more details on what HE would like in the bill or he is going to end up BLOWING IT. There are too many people on both sides of the discussion that are somewhat concerned that if they publicly go along with some of the tax ideas and/or mandatory ideas they will lose their next election. This is very understandable. The ONLY out for them could be the President saying POINT BLANK: I want this_________ (fill in blank); I want this _______ ( fill in Blank), and I want this______ ( fill in blank). It is time to grab the bull by the horns Mr. President or you are NOT GOING TO GET IT ACCOMPLISHED!!!!

    July 22, 2009 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  23. dan, MI

    Barack Obama has no direction for health-care. He knows that he got elected with Ted Kennedy's support so he wants to accomplish Ted Kennedy's health-care bill as quickly as possible. What direction Barack can have. He does nto even know what he is talking about. Mayo Clinic gave him mouthful and so also blue-dog democrats. He has no experience my friends. He should go back to a training school. Our country is at risk in everything including national security, our economy, etc. What a tragedy.

    July 22, 2009 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
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