August 30th, 2009
11:30 AM ET
2 years ago

Kennedy 'expected more of us' on health care, Dodd says

Sen. Dodd said Sunday that his late friend Sen. Kennedy would be 'terribly disappointed' if partisan politics dominated the health care reform debate.
Sen. Dodd said Sunday that his late friend Sen. Kennedy would be 'terribly disappointed' if partisan politics dominated the health care reform debate.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – A close personal friend of the late Sen. Ted Kennedy said Sunday that the Massachusetts lawmaker’s death ought to act as an inspiration for Democrats and the entire Senate to set aside partisan differences and pass health care legislation.

“We ought to sit down together and work it out and go through this” Connecticut Democrat Sen. Christopher Dodd said on CNN’s State of the Union a day after Kennedy’s funeral. “That’s what we do in the Senate. That’s how things move forward. . . . The country cannot afford this any longer. We need to have a health care plan in this country that’s accessible, affordable, and quality. And how we get there is the challenge before us. And we must meet that challenge. ”

Pointing out that Kennedy introduced his first piece of health care reform legislation roughly 40 years ago, Dodd also said that his friend would be “terribly disappointed” if partisan politics dominated the debate over fixing the nation’s health care system.

“He expected more of us and I think we can meet that expectation and I’m confident we can,” Dodd told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King.

Related video: 'What would Teddy do?'

Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, also a close friend of Kennedy’s, suggested that the partisan gulf between the two parties on health care may be too wide to bridge.

Getting a bill passed is “going to take a lot of work,” Hatch said Sunday. The Republican also said it was “crazy” to try to squeeze money out of the Medicare program in order to help fund broader health care reform including a hotly contested public health insurance option.


Filed under: Chris Dodd • Health care • Orrin Hatch • Popular Posts • State of the Union • Ted Kennedy
soundoff (151 Responses)
  1. Big Bear

    If you consider this country as strong and powerful as it was following World War II, then you have to love the Democrats and their liberal policies that have taken place since that time.
    However, if you lived in the US during and shortly after WWII, then you know that liberalism has stifled the freedoms that allows us to be the land of the free and the home of the brave.
    Obama and his cronies are further destroying that concept. I guess he and his supporters think a European style nation run by the government is better for us.

    August 30, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  2. PROUD Conservative

    I am sorry for Kennedy's family. It is hard to lose a family member. But one less liberal Democrat in American trying to steal my freedom is alright with me. The only thing the Government should do is torte reform...oh I forgot most of Congress are Attorneys! They aren't going to mess with their meal ticket! If you don't have insurance do the right thing...get another job, give up your TV and cell phone. We are becoming a welfare nation and it is sick!

    August 30, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  3. No Hillary = No Obama

    At some level it is puzzling that Ted Kennedy would endorse Obama for President over Hillary Clinton. Kennedy called him Osama instead of Obama when he first got on the bandwagon revealing that he got caught up in the rush instead of knowing Obama by any significant accomplishment. I think with the end of the Kennedy triad, idealism will less likely morph into reality and may this isn't so bad – why elect someone who is not qualified just because they are the 1st of something? Bad choice.

    August 30, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  4. gary

    dodd what a joke this guy is sweetheart mortgage deals kickbacks hey dodd if you thought canada and england had such health care why did you not go there for your recent health problems

    August 30, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  5. Dimslie

    He'd better start worrying less about what dead Dims expect and a little more about what his constituents think.

    August 30, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  6. Kathy

    Go away Dodd!! I think finally you will be voted out. It's time you and a lot of others go. We truly need term limits for these guys. I'm all for healthcare reform, but not what you're selling.

    August 30, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  7. Farrell in Houston

    Have the insurance companies been asked if they will guarantee their insurers they won't raise their rates. The answer is no, why should they when people are being used like puppets to fight for them.

    August 30, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  8. Cali Mike

    40 years and Republicans are still saying that health care reform is too much, too big, too fast. Really? Seriously? Honor the sacrifices of the Kennedys for America and pass health care WITH A PUBLIC OPTION. Anything less is unacceptable.

    The Party of NO is killing hundreds of Americans every single day by fighting reform

    August 30, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  9. Steve Lyons

    Kennedy expected us to make sacrifices that he himself would never do all for the benefit of his voter block. NO MORE! I for one am glad the bastard is dead. May the healthcare takover plan be buried with him.

    August 30, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  10. Dimslie

    I wonder what Kennedy thinks of abortion now. Too bad we can't get an update.

    August 30, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  11. Fan of Common Sense

    One of the main reasons healthcare cost is so high in this country is because of the outlandish amount of insurance that healthcare providers have to purchase in order to protect them from frivulous lawsuits. So if the democrats really want lower the cost of healthcare in this country, why is it you never hear them say the words TORT REFORM?

    (I already know the answer. It's because the ambulance-chasing trial lawyers are one of the DNC's biggest contributors. What hypocrites.)

    August 30, 2009 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  12. Steve Lyons

    Start by passing TORT reform, and give that time to settle down before disrupting the rest of the apple cart.

    August 30, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  13. Tom in VA

    All the inter-posting bickering and debating on here is HILARIOUS! I guess it beats taking a position and supporting it.

    Kennedy expected more from everybody for everything....such is the way of a wealthy socialist and elitist. Much like Obamy, he preferred to obligate state and federal government to provide for citizens instead of promoting CAPITALISM and equitable competition in the market place to provide jobs.

    JOBS are the magical pill, and our democratically elected officials continue to ship them from the US to the 4 corners of the Earth. Until that changes and we restore true growth, our economy and fiscal health will continue to deteriorate – BEYOND GOVERNMENT CONTROL!

    August 30, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  14. nurse

    They will drag Ted's dead ass around the capitol to pass this bill

    August 30, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  15. GI Joe

    Bipartisanship to the American Taliban (read that Right-wing-nuts) is "Do it the way we say – for insurance and profits – to hell with people".

    Tell the Party of no that we say NO TO THEM - tell them with your votes.

    August 30, 2009 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  16. Hopeful Optimist

    Just because a large portion of the class does not understand long division in elementary math class is not a good reason to withhold the logical progression to the next level of instruction for the majority of students. That is exactly what is happening with the healthcare debate in this country. That sizable but vocal minority that does not 'get it' is no reason to stop pursuing it. Go ahead and pass it with Dems only and include a public option and the lesser among us intellectually (conservative Repubs) will be forced to go along. Like the math example, they'll probably never get a grasp of it mentally, but eventually they will come to like it - kinda like MediCare. I am sixty-one years old and remember that debate also. Same sides squared off then too. But LBJ was such a skillful sponsor that it passed, with the help of Ted Kennedy, the guy the Repubs love to hate.

    August 30, 2009 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  17. Margaret

    STOP blaming this fisaco on the Republicans. We're sick of it. You don't need their votes to pass this and all of America knows that.

    You're so busy preaching "rights" to those who expect others to pay for them, how about accepting some of the responsibility?

    August 30, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  18. GI Joe

    Vote the rascals out. You all keep electing Republicans and then whine and complain. Learn your lesson, and teach them a lesson. Vote them out. A backward state like NC had sense enough to kick Dole out - you can do it.

    August 30, 2009 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  19. Albo58

    Sure Kennedy "expected more of us" on health care, but, as for him, he had the very best, non-rationed health care that the American taxpayers could buy! Dodd and these other do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do thieves are not worthy of serving the American people!

    August 30, 2009 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  20. Dan, WA

    Sen. Dodd, you are the main reason for partisanship. Democrats wants socialism in this country, Government to take control; of our lives. I hope CT people do not elect you as senator in the coming election. All liberal progressive democrats should be thrown out. Wake up America. This has nothing to do with Ted Kennedy and his passing away. American people are smart eno9ugh to know that health care is something personal and this will be between their family doctor and themselves.

    August 30, 2009 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  21. thomas lybbert

    dodd is right kennedy wanted the american people to roll over and take it up the butt on health takeover but we didn't. sl kennedy was disappointed. I am personally disappointed in dodd and kennedy because as champions of nationalized health care they should have shown their loyalty to the cause by going to Canada or England for treatment. The hypocrites including kennedy made sure they were exempt from the nationalized health care system. If it is not good enough for them it is not good enough for us.

    August 30, 2009 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  22. madone rider

    I wish someone could explain reasonably and rationally how having a public option for obtaining health care coverage is the government having "too much control over our lives.". Those that claim this are simply of the "I've got mine, screw you people.". This country needs health care reform NOW!!! There needs to be a single payor system, not just a public option.

    August 30, 2009 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
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