September 17th, 2009
01:16 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama hits the road with health care reform message

Obama hits the road with health care reform message.
Obama hits the road with health care reform message.

COLLEGE PARK, Maryland (CNN) – President Barack Obama took his health care reform message back on the road again Thursday, promising a raucous crowd of college students that Congress will pass legislation this year.

"We will get this done," he said at a campaign-style rally at the University of Maryland. "In the United States, nobody should go broke because
they get sick."

The president slammed GOP critics for attacking his reform plan to "score short-term political points." Some Republicans "want to kill Obama care," he said, but their solutions "amount to the same old, same old. ... I will not accept the status quo as a solution."

This "is when the special interests gear up" and spread distortions, he warned.


The president has increasingly tapped the "bully pulpit" power of the presidency in recent weeks to spark new momentum for his number one domestic priority.

Obama's latest remarks came a day after the powerful chairman of the Senate Finance Committee unveiled his long-awaited compromise health care plan.

Montana Sen. Max Baucus' proposal would cost $774 billion over 10 years while reducing the federal deficit by $49 billion, according to the
non-partisan Congressional Budget Office.

The plan would require all Americans to have health insurance, but lacks a government-run public health insurance option favored by Obama and most Democrats. The budget office review estimated the proposal would leave 25 million people uninsured by 2019 - about a third of them illegal immigrants - compared to 46 million people currently without health-care coverage.

The plan came under immediate criticism from Republicans, including three members of Baucus' Finance Committee who participated in months of negotiations with him and two other committee Democrats. Some liberal Democrats also dislike it for dropping the public insurance option.

The White House, however, welcomed the plan as a step forward in the health care debate. Baucus called it a pragmatic proposal with a realistic chance of passing the Senate and noted its similarity to a framework for health care legislation laid out by Obama during his speech to Congress last week.

The Senate Finance Committee is the last of five congressional committees needed to approve health care proposals before the topic can be taken up by both the full Senate and the full House of Representatives.

Various forms of the legislation proposed by Democrats have already cleared three House committees, as well as the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.


Filed under: Health care • President Obama
soundoff (89 Responses)
  1. jaye

    We stand with you and support you on this healthcare overhaul.
    Don't let the naysayers and the liars stop what you're trying to achieve.
    Your supporters are with you and rely on you to get a good bill passes – either with or without the republicans.
    The republicans are out to destroy you.

    September 17, 2009 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  2. Josh in TN

    Go Obama

    September 17, 2009 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  3. Bob in Pa

    Well at least he is finally taking ownership of this train wreck.

    September 17, 2009 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  4. jen

    Nice one Prez, RELENTLESS! Forget the critics and do what's best for the american people!

    September 17, 2009 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  5. Jimmy the Greek

    Glad to see the Campaigner-in-Chief WASTING tax-dollars pushing his unpopular, Union-Sponsored Heathcare agenda.

    Gosh, maybe he could swing by his buddies at ACORN to say hello?

    September 17, 2009 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  6. yuri

    And there he goes again, for a full scale over exposure, which, sure as heck, will come under fire from all and sundry. Watch out BHO! If this pugnacious pitch persists, people will, perchance, pursue a path of pessimism.

    September 17, 2009 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  7. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Wish I could've been there to offer my support. I am so grateful for the youth of today. Obama has sparked their interest in politics. These young kids came out in droves to vote for our President, they are our future, and will help to bring out the change that this country so desperately thirsts for. Obama has to stay front and center expounding ont he TRUE points of the healthcare reform, via any media available to him. He must continue to reach out to all of his citizens in order to impart veracity and eradicate distortions and outright lies. Then let people make up their minds armed with facts not fear and denigration.IMHO. Thank you CNN should you post this.

    September 17, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  8. Anon

    Can the President just stay put and govern the country for a while? He was elected. He does not need to campaign any more.

    September 17, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  9. Ken

    How much taxpayer dollars are being spent on Obama and his entourage to travel all over the U.S. to try and sell something to the people that the people don't want. Talk about Waste, Fraud, and Abuse!

    September 17, 2009 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  10. Eddie

    Is Obama above Reproach?

    September 17, 2009 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  11. Neil

    The same old same old is "blasting" someone when they don't agree with you. Instead, how about "they have some valid concerns and we'll see if we can craft a compromise".

    Obama, with his Chicago style politics, is straying farther and farther from his campaign rhetoric of bi-partisanship and changing the tone of DC.

    Say what you want about how the Republicans are behaving, but the buck stops with Obama. If you really want bi-partisanship and a civil tone in DC, it is Obama's responsibility to create that environment. It will be very difficult and will take a long time, but that is why he was elected. Sometimes he will have to take the high road and bite his tounge, but it will pay off in the long run. Obama might be well served to keep the old saying in mind: "Never wrestle with a pig. You'll both get muddy and the pig will love it."

    September 17, 2009 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  12. JS007

    The Baucus plan is a DISASTER as it forces people to buy insurance but has NO controls on cost. It is obvious that the insurance industry owns the Senate and I'm waiting for Obama to start naming and shaming these thieves publicly until they pass a real bill that helps the people, not the greedy corporations. Without reducing health care costs America will literally go bankrupt.

    September 17, 2009 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  13. Four and The Door

    The president slammed GOP critics for attacking his reform plan to "score short-term political points." _____________________________________________________
    The truth of the matter is that The Public Option is only good for his own short term political points. As a long term solution to Health Care costs it fails miserably. It destroys the Health Insurance Industry and in doing so it will raise overall costs and lower the quality of health care.

    By saying that it will not add to the deficit you have to agree that if a health care reform bill does not pass that we will continue overspending on Medicare to the tune of $500 billion. This is his version of managing our country's wealth?

    September 17, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  14. Burns NH

    Willly Nelson sang that song "On the road again" and it was a hit. Mr president your song does not fly and is not a hit. Please get with what
    Americans want. Just let all the best minds across the nation have a say in how this whole health care thing can work,without breaking the bank for us till the end of time.

    September 17, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  15. A Democrat of 51 years who has finally got smart to their follishness.

    OBama has been in office for 9 months and not one program realized. Not one CHANGE that his platform ran on has been done. Are we to put up with this another three years. All he does is broadcast on the radio or TV. This has nothing to do with racism. this has to do with a do-nothing even if it's wrong President. Now I hear hear is going to meet with the Muslims at the White House. OKAY CITIZENS IT'S TIME TO TAKE OUR GOVERNMENT BACK.

    September 17, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  16. MatthewDetroit

    NOW you are backing down to the RUSSIANS.
    You are such a woos.

    Homeland Security is misspending the money to build the fence...
    You dropped the missile shield because you are weak.
    Cap and Trade is a BIG LIE.
    In 1989 The UN said to prepare for GLOBAL COOLING.
    Now in 2009 The UN said to prepare for GLOBAL WARMING. LIE.

    UNEMPLOYMEN IS CLIMBING.
    SPENDING IS 4X in 1 year what BUSH added to the deficit.
    You are a liar and a thief...

    Oh and great job with that ACORN community organizer. LIAR.

    September 17, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  17. Mark

    America cant afford the almost one trillion dollar cost on top of Obama's already out of control spending.

    September 17, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  18. Sam Sixpack

    The plan is to take 500 billion Medicare dollars and divert them to fat, greedy insurance execs.

    Another $250 billion or so are about to come out of your tax dollars and go straight to fat, greedy insurance execs.

    Millions of Americans are going to be required, by this new law, to give their hard-earned money to – you guessed it – fat, greedy insurance execs.

    Furthermore, once the $500 billion is stolen from Medicare there will be no choice but to pull the plug on your grandma (unless, of course, you're a fat, greedy insurance exec).

    I don't care how stupid you are. I don't want my government to pull the plug on your grandmother.

    You are being scammed – again.

    September 17, 2009 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  19. rj

    I still don't know what hc reform entails. President Obama makes it sound good, but the bill is written by Congress.
    It could cover illegals, ration care, and tax the middleclass.

    People who are covered at work are happy with their benefits.
    I hope they will make changes that make healthcare affordable.

    September 17, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  20. Dave

    Wonder what new message the public will get this time around, hopefully Mr. President you will finally provide some specific details about what you believe should be in Health Care reform. And then more importantly demand those changes be made in the current legislation and call out Dem's when they fail to do so.

    September 17, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  21. Nea

    With all the things that are on this President plate he cant waste time with critics that just want to slow him down and keep him from accomplishing his goals.This President really needs PRAYER like never before he have been called every thing but an child of GOD. Yes previous had a lot on their plates as well but i have never seen this much along with all the opposition towards him.I really wish this nation could come together with one voice to move to the next level because i really believe that a nation thats divided cannot stand. Unforunately thats just wishful thinking.

    September 17, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  22. Peggy - TX

    Now come the RACIST with their incoherent, illogical messages dripping with poorly masked visceral anger and hatred.

    These angry RACIST are simply against President Obama and they are identifiable by the use of identical – illogical phases picked up, no doubt, from the same source which they repeat, clearly with out understanding that what they are repeating is absurd and are basically outright LIES. That is how they can be identified, by their unexplained anger and false, pretext of their message.

    Not all people that oppose the new Bill are RACIST, but a lot of them are and I am not talking about a just few on the fringe, we are talking about the core. Also, the fact is the GOP has embraced the RACIST agenda and has failed to condemn RACISM..

    September 17, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  23. Neutralizer

    Obamacare is to DIE FOR! Ditch HR3200, do it all over again and not more 15 pages with language easy to understand by a common man. We cannot afford a lawyer to interpret freaking long winded over 1000 pages plan they have loaded with legal terms.

    I gave Obambi a chance to prove his self, he's worth it – he failed me MISERABLY. His ACORN is coming back to haunt him. Is he a legit president? or a FRAUD, who won the election by rigging votes with the help of ACORN another arm he paid $800,000.00 to get votes for him.

    I blame mainstream media who up to now way up Obambi's arse, they stink like sheit and covered with sheit. It took two young people to exposed CORRUPTION of ACORN which Obambi worked for years as Community Organizer in Chicago. Obambi trained ACORN staff, he represented ACORN against banks in Chicago.

    September 17, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  24. Tim

    It's like watching reruns of the Brady Bunch. You know the punchlines, but some can't stop watching.

    September 17, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  25. Maggie the Waitress

    Out of the 19 so-called "industrialized nations" Americas Healthcare System ranks number19. The other 18 are all Government Run.
    The average yearly cost for the Government Run is $4000 per person. In America including the uninsured it's $8000 per person.
    In other words if we adopted the same Government Run system we would not only have a much better healthcare but we would save overa trillion dollars a year.

    September 17, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
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