August 22nd, 2009
08:12 AM ET
5 years ago

Divided Democrats put Obama in health care bind

President Obama finds himself squeezed by party liberals and Blue Dog Democrats in the debate on health care.
President Obama finds himself squeezed by party liberals and Blue Dog Democrats in the debate on health care.

(CNN) – As President Obama struggles to regain control of the health care debate, he's finding himself caught in a game of tug of war with members of his own party.

The conservative Blue Dog Democrats don't want a bill with a government-sponsored, public health plan, and liberal Democrats have said they won't pass legislation without one.

Despite strong majorities in both chambers of Congress, Democrats have been unable to reach an agreement on the legislation. And the administration has acknowledged that it will be difficult to pass a bill with bipartisan support.

"The White House needs to take more of a role in trying to broker a deal between the Blue Dogs and party liberals - in bringing them together and trying to figure some compromise," said Stu Rothenberg, a political analyst and editor of the nonpartisan Rothenberg Political Report.

"It's like a coach who took a ball, threw it in the middle of the court and said, 'OK, go get it.' And everybody runs there, and they have a huge scrum, and there's not a lot of progress," Rothenberg added.

"I think he needs to be more hands-on. ... Why not start with areas of consensus among all Democrats and then try to move out from there?"

Full story


Filed under: Health care
soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. Wake Up

    Obama puts 9 Trillion deficit out on a friday late afternoon before vacation. This guy is a fraud. Obamabots, I hope you are happy. What a waste of an opportunity.

    August 22, 2009 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  2. elliott

    This president must be stopped!! He is spending us into a hole that neither we nor our childrens' children will be able to claw out of !!
    And with the health scare bill, he is seeking to destroy America as we've known it. America is still the greatest nation on earth....for a little while longer. But it is fast becoming an OBAMANATION....
    This president has had his little experiment, now let's send him packing !!

    We the People demand Responsible leadership in 2012 !!!!

    August 22, 2009 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  3. Jack Walden

    Republicans having become Repugnants, Democrats at their inefficient and Bickering best, it is no wonder that USA is a shadow of what it once was.. A compassionate super-power.

    August 22, 2009 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  4. Marie MD

    Some of these democrats are afraid of the healthcare mob and that is exactly what the insurance companies and the repugs want. Most of the people I speak with want the public option and a change in their healthcare plans.
    Even that bachmann woman doesn't know what she is saying when she speaks against the administration and the healthcare plan. She actually said that she didn't want the government to tell her what to do with her body. Guess what? That sounds very liberal to me.
    The repugs have no answer once again to whatever they are against. Last year if was the hate, bigotry and lies. This year is the healthcare plan without any plan of their own.

    August 22, 2009 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  5. katiec

    The blue dogs are a disgrace to the democrat party. Everyone needs
    to check into their connections, their amount of campaign funding that comes from medical related organizations to understand where
    many are coming from.
    They, like the republicans, appear to be supporting big business
    over the welfare of the American people.

    August 22, 2009 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  6. m jeff

    Blue dogs will be remembered for their Republican stance next election.

    August 22, 2009 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  7. Peter

    Let's address the elephant in the room: This isn't about Health Care. Its about the fear and anxiety of us having a Black President.

    The Trailer Trash at the town halls has no idea what is in the bills – only what Fox News tells them is in it. They aren't inteligent enough to read and interpret itself, thus, they fall back on their fears which CNN and Fox are all too happy to exploit.

    Shame on you cnn. shame on you!

    August 22, 2009 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  8. Joe Terrogano

    As a guest on a news program said, "What value does health insurance add". Those companies are there to make a profit, at your expense. Why are they throwing millions at the health care debate? Because they love you and are concerned about you? Plan costs, deductibles, and copays will continue to rise. So will prescriptions. Wall Street does not care about you. Didn't the banks tkae us all for a ride? Nothing will reduce healthcare costs as long as those companies have a monopoly. Corporations are exerting an undue influence on our government.

    August 22, 2009 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  9. Carlos

    Why the long face Barry, you look like your wife.

    August 22, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  10. Right Leaning Independent

    See story above – 9 trillion dollar defict train about to hit us!!! Obama spent your health care money on wasteful stimulus, financial institutions and automotive buyouts!! Wait for the next stories to appear – "China stops buying US bonds because they are afraid they will lose their investment" and "China and other countries support a new market currency to take the place of the dollar". Though most people blogging here have no idea what effect this will have on them, let me tell you that America as you know it today will dramatically change for the worse!! The tax man is coming to see all you on "Main Street" no matter what you were promised. Obama has soaked the rich and its your turn next. No healthcare in 2009 – Obama the big time spending liberal has broke the piggy bank!!

    August 22, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  11. Penn Voter

    80% of America want to keep their current healthcare plan and coverage. Does this White House think that we are a bunch of idiots that need to be dictated into a government run healthcare plan where we loose our rights? Does this White House think that we want to be taxed into poverty so that we then "all equal"?

    August 22, 2009 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  12. Loup Garou 782

    Finally..... Take a good look at the photo and you see the real obama. Not the grinning,smirking, smiling idiot you people think you elected.

    August 22, 2009 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  13. ran

    We need a single payer non-profit universal healh care system.

    If the "blue dogs' prevent us from getting a non-profit option either public or co-op then they should be kick out of the Democratic party. I believe they are really GOP in democratic clothes anyway.

    I just receive a refund check from my utility co-op and it could have just as eaisly been from an insurance co-op if I had that option.

    August 22, 2009 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  14. ran

    We need a single payer non-profit universal health care system.

    If the "blue dogs' prevent us from getting a non-profit option either public or co-op then they should be kick out of the Democratic party. I believe they are really GOP in democratic clothes anyway.

    I just receive a refund check from my utility co-op and it could have just as easily been from an insurance co-op if I had that option.

    August 22, 2009 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  15. Marty, FL

    On the contrary, the House Energy and Commerce Committee was able to pass a bill including a public option with the support of conservative Blue Dogs. Senate Finance is the final committee that should be able to pass the same version and uphold their elected duties.

    The majority of Americans support a public option, and there is no reason why a so-called gang of 6 should be allowed to obstruct the process when two GOP members have "NO" intention on voting for any version of the bill. Please...enough already.

    Americans deserve health-care reforms with the widely supported public option, as we voted for this past election.

    August 22, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  16. katiec

    Please keep in mind, that in addition to the republicans, blue dogs and big business, the media is supporting the destruction of Health Care Reform. Remember, they are big business and big business wants to continue giving full attention to their bottom line of greed and power.
    Check into campaign donations, connections these dishonorable politicians have with health care entities. Realize they are putting
    campaign funds, personal gains and interests over the welfare
    of the American people.
    This has to stop and we must demand integrity and honor in the
    reporting, making of decisions in Health Care Reform.

    August 22, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  17. Joe-Wilmington, DE

    Obama's biggest problem is not Republicans, it's the idiot ideologues in his own party.

    August 22, 2009 10:56 am at 10:56 am |