August 24th, 2009
09:26 AM ET
5 years ago

Congresswoman says some senators 'Neanderthals'

Waters is urging the president to keep the public option plan.
Waters is urging the president to keep the public option plan.

(CNN) -- As President Obama begins his vacation in Martha's Vineyard this week, the fiery debate over health care reform continues to rage.

The latest member of congress to wade into the issue is California Rep. Maxine Waters, a liberal Democrat who at a town hall over the weekend implored the president not to drop the public option plan and said his efforts at bipartisanship are futile.

Watch: Obama pressured on Public Option

"Yes, we know that you are a nice man, that you want to work with the opposite side of the aisle. But there comes a time when you need to drop that and move forward," she said. "We're saying to you, Mr. President, 'Be tough. Use everything that you've got. Do what you have to do. And we have your back.' "

The longtime congresswoman, whose district includes much of Los Angeles, also described some senators who are opposed to the health care reform bill as "Neanderthals."

Earlier: Lieberman warns Obama not to do too much

"Not only are we going to do everything we can to organize and put pressure on the senators - some of whom are Neanderthals - we're going to say to the president, 'We want you to use every weapon in your basket in order to get those senators to do what they should be doing,' " she said.

The comments were met with strong applause in the forum held at L.A. Southwest College, a community college that that abuts several impoverished neighborhoods.


Filed under: Health care • Popular Posts
soundoff (303 Responses)
  1. Sam Sixpack

    Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, Obama's Special Advisor for Health Policy, says, "services provided to individuals who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens are not basic and should not be guaranteed. An obvious example is not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia."

    The "Neaderthals" who oppose this kind of thinking will be added to the list.

    August 24, 2009 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  2. Kevin

    It's about time the Democrats grew a pair and stood up the extremely misinformed Republicans. There's no way Obama is going to get these guys on his side. Even if they thought the public option was a good idea, they have to do whatever Rush Limbaugh says or they don't stand a change of getting reelected.

    August 24, 2009 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  3. anti liberal

    actually ma'am, neanderthals are ones that want to TAKE OVER entire systems of the economy, ie the Democrats. Automakers, Healthcare, Energy.

    SEIU now runs the auto biz, whose going to run healthcare, ACORN???

    August 24, 2009 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  4. Kevin

    Uniting the different factions of the Democratic Party will be a huge task for President Obama. He must find a way to accomplish this if he expects to have a successful presidency.

    August 24, 2009 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  5. Billy from NC

    "Not only are we going to do everything we can to organize and put pressure on the senators — some of whom are Neanderthals — we're going to say to the president, 'We want you to use every weapon in your basket in order to get those senators to do what they should be doing,' " she said.

    What is she saying? That she wants to nuke the states of these senator(s)?

    Good grief, she's off her rocker.

    August 24, 2009 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  6. Ellid

    My only complaint is that comparing certain Republicans to Neanderthals insults Neanderthals *cough*sarahpalin*cough*

    August 24, 2009 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  7. Randolph Carter the evil narcissistic Obamabot

    At this point I don't see the point in passing any healthcare reform as it exists. The stupid democrats have caved on anything resembling real reform. They could have proposed single payer and made the republicans comprimise with a public option, but no. They never even put it on the table. Now it looks like there will be no public option. So what are we left with? It'll probably turn out to be some sort of mandate where everyone is required to buy insurance and low income folks will get some sort of subsidy. Weak. All this will do is make more money for the insurance companies. Some reform. The freakin' democrats blew it. Wait until your insurance and healthcare costs double and medicare collapses because of the aging baby boom. Then maybe something real will get done. Have a nice day!

    August 24, 2009 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  8. Peggy - TX

    Thanks Maxine Waters for standing firm and promoting the health care vbill options that are right for all America.

    August 24, 2009 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  9. Jeff In Ohio

    Neanderthals? That's generous!

    August 24, 2009 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  10. Ken, Medford MA

    Now, Now, Now there's no need to seriously insult the Neanderthals by comparing them to Republican senators. Maxine you've gone too far. They're just trying to protect their phony baloney jobs.
    We all know that if the R's were in power now they'd ramming all sorts of crap through and calling their opponents un-american.

    August 24, 2009 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  11. ?QUESTIONEVERYTHING?

    When I look at Maxine Waters, I do think of Neanderthals.

    If the current health care bill passes with the socialist agenda particulars still incorporated into it, come the 2010 election, the neanderthals and Democrats will both be extinct. They are over-reaching to the left, just as the Republicans over-reached to the right.

    August 24, 2009 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  12. Sniffit

    She's giving them too much credit. They've devolved past that and are re-approachign monkeydom.

    August 24, 2009 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  13. blaster

    She's an expert on Neanderthals.

    August 24, 2009 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  14. haren

    senator Lieberman they should kick this guy from any chairmanship.
    He just like to spend our money for Israel to fight war in middle east only.

    August 24, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  15. Mike V

    What would happen if a Republican referred to Obama and the dem's as neanderthals???

    August 24, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  16. Post always rejected by CNN

    I thought Liberman had crawled back under his rock. Oh dear, he just had to spew that republican view didn't he. I wish Baldwin would go up against him in the senate race.

    And I agree with Maxine Waters some of the republicans are worst than Neanderthals....all the care about is big business and filling THEIR pockets. When oh when will the people in their districts wake up.

    August 24, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  17. GL

    Maxine Waters, now there's a mainstream politico. With a political base largely consisiting of felons and the unemployed she is the true voice of healthcare reform. The public option in her case is probably the LA County jail.

    August 24, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  18. James M. Holmes

    At least some people are willing to speak the truth! THE GOP make cavemen look good!

    August 24, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  19. Ernesto

    And Ms. Waters, along with Reid and Pelosi make me wonder what has happened to the Dems. Better leadership would be a great new start to reforming a great party.

    August 24, 2009 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  20. Michael

    Lucky that much of the Republican party doesn't believe in Neanderthals, and certainly that we are in any way related to them. SO this comment will go way over their heads.

    August 24, 2009 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  21. NAVY JACK

    yes Maxine, avoid any direct involvement in RESPONSIBLE GOVERNMENT! You, like so many, aren't really Neanderthals.
    Most likely, you are MOONBATS! and on both sides of the aisle!

    This 111 th Congress is no doubt the best argument for term limits and a ban on lobbyists. Even the Justice, Treasury, HHS, ETC., are openly wasteful and filled with INEPTITUDE; as well as motivated by narrow BIASES; and guilty of TAX EVASION.

    They are shamefully ignorant and irresponsible!

    August 24, 2009 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  22. Carnell

    I Agree With Congresswoman Maxine Waters All The Way.

    August 24, 2009 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  23. Norman

    So if you don't agree with creating a huge new federal beauracracy that will bankrupt the country, then you are a Neandertal? It would be interesting to see the reaction that would take place if a republican called Sen. Waters a Neandertal.

    August 24, 2009 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  24. landscapebear

    good for her. i wish more of the so-called democrats would grow a pair and stand up to the bullies on the playground!

    August 24, 2009 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  25. Jarhead

    Wow–Maxine Waters calling Republican Senators neanderthals:
    Now isn't she just the prime example of reasoned, rational and objective thinking and discussion? Riiiiggghhhttt.!

    August 24, 2009 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
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