February 23rd, 2010
04:23 PM ET
8 years ago

Gibbs weighs in on 'pre-game chatter' before health care summit

 White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs called some of the partisan tension before Thursday's summit 'locker room material.'

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs called some of the partisan tension before Thursday's summit 'locker room material.'

Washington (CNN)-With Republican criticism mounting over Thursday's health care summit, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs called the tensions as "a bit of pre-game chatter" and "locker room material."

The White House says it's still optimistic that progress can come from the bi-partisan effort to move health care reform forward.

In the wake of Monday's jobs bill vote, supported by a handful of Republican senators, including newly elected Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown, Gibbs said it was a "good example, good lead in to Thursday."
The White House says the vote shows lawmakers were willing to put aside partisanship games and do what was important for the American people.

Filed under: Congress • Health care • Obama administration
soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. Stallion

    The only thing it shows thus far is: the democrats are worried about their decreasing poll numbers.....and that's just the way it is.

    February 23, 2010 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  2. JA/TN

    all that oppose should be stripped of their rolls royce coveage, subsidized by tax dollars

    February 23, 2010 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  3. Wake Up

    Obama is a disaster. So he takes an inflated, awful bill, and expands it and calls it bi-partisan??? The country doesn't want this garbage!! Quit spending!!! Less big govt. NOW

    February 23, 2010 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  4. CommonSense09

    Finally, but it was still only 5 republicans and not more...Wow! And that want to be back in office to do what....continue the mess they allowed while in leadership the last time???

    February 23, 2010 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  5. Dodd Democrat...

    The more Gibbs talks......the more he turns us off and makes us wonder if we made the right choice voting for President Obama.

    February 23, 2010 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  6. terry,va.

    What is good for the American people in terms of health care is to cover people with Medicaid that can't work or works but don't have the ability to pay for health care. Leave the rest of us alone!!!!! To the sorry people that thought they could lay on the couch and have Obummie steal from us and give to you. Get over it!!!! It's not going to happen.

    February 23, 2010 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  7. Papasan in AZ

    Accept the reality that the Government is never going to bail out Main Street USA or Create Universal Health Care, once you do you will be partially depressed and relieved. Here is the good part, we can start believing in ourselves, move forward with our lives, and tell Washington to drop dead, and Washington is very scared about it too. There is a lot of power in relinquishing Washington's control over your life and future.

    The Great Depression was the same way, Americans finally gave up on " Help is on the way " and created a their own help called " Self Reliance ". That's how Mom, Dad, Grand Pa and Grand Ma did it, and that's how we have to do it.

    Good Bye, Good Luck, and don't forget to write!


    February 23, 2010 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  8. Rob Johnson

    Republicans are giddy over their recent success, and I suppose they have a right to be.

    However, if they think Obama is just going to roll over for them, then they haven't been paying attention. This is no sprint, it's a marathon, and time may show that the GOP peaked too early.

    Ask Hillary Clinton and John McCain if it's wise to count Obama out. He has shown his ability to win a long fight before, and he will win this one by the time it is over.

    February 23, 2010 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  9. chill

    I'm still trying to figure out what part of the healthcare bill the GOP is opposed to. I guess the overall cost and the fact that Obama wants to pay for it as opposed to the drug benefit under Bush. But you'd think they'd like the idea of cutting spending (Medicare Advantage). Why not just show up and work out a cap of some sort on lawsuits and the use of a national exchange so individuals and small businesses can buy across state lines- both positions they claim to endorse? If they don't, it just goes to show that they are NOT interested in fixing this issue. After a year of chatter, starting over and wasting another year is stupid. They know the issues; just work something out. If not, do what Busha nd the GOP did and reconcile.

    February 23, 2010 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  10. Jan

    It is interesting to note that the wealth who have government health care do not care how others manage. As one with pre-existing conditions my co-payments in Tax year 2009 was just over $3,000.00 for tax year 2009 it is now over $5,000.00.

    How much will it be next year?

    We need GHANGE

    February 23, 2010 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  11. Jan

    It is interesting to note that the wealth who have government health care do not care how others manage. As one with pre-existing conditions my co-payments in Tax year 2008 was just over $3,000.00 for tax year 2009 it is now over $5,000.00.

    How much will it be next year?

    We need GHANGE

    February 23, 2010 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  12. CoffeeBeatsTea

    ""Robert Gibbs called the tensions as "a bit of pre-game chatter" and "locker room material."

    The White House says it's still optimistic that progress can come from the bi-partisan effort to move health care reform forward.""

    This isnt a basketball game guys. They are NOT suppose to compete. Dems and Repubs need to get their act together and work towards making us, the American people, happy.

    February 23, 2010 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  13. Everybody better say NO

    All the GOP/Tea haters are so caught up that has anyone slowed down to question IF THIS HEALTHCARE BILL IS SO WONDERFUL-WHY IS OBAMA-CONGRESS-LABOR UNIONS not on it?When they go on it then I will buy in.Better quit worrying about repubs and question this.

    February 23, 2010 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  14. miguel

    you are so called leaders you are all nothing but a bunch of clowns. your not fit to lead the u.s.a. november is all most here cant wait till you all get your pink slips. may god protect and watch over our country.

    February 23, 2010 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  15. Average American

    The President has already incorporated some Republican ideas into his plan (and given them public credit for it). That's bi-partisanship. I hope they come to the table with a new attitude. We need health care reform. No one will get everything he or she wants, but the current system (with the 37% premium increases and all) is definitely broken!

    February 23, 2010 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  16. Sea.gem

    This summit is a political joke..Obama had one last year...then he ignored Repubs contributions...he asked for their input two weeks ago..it was given to him and he ignored it...he now comes to the table with the same tired (albeit reconfigured) plan the people of this country do not want...this is vintage Obama grandstanding say one thing to the press to appear as if he is bi-partisan then force the same bs...he was caught in a lie during the last backroom attempt now he wants to stop his image from falling further...what a sad man and worse leader...

    February 23, 2010 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  17. Ellie

    I swear these GROWN Republicans behave like a bunch of sniffling babies with poopie diapers.


    Americans are struggling, the JOB market sucks, no THANKS to the Republicans AND Republicans STILL continue to whine and cry the blues, blues, blues.

    If it wasn't for the REPUBLICAN INCOMPETENCY for 8 years, we wouldn't be in the POOPIE we're in now.

    TO THE DEMOCRATS – shove this JOB BILL right up the Republicans you-KNOW-what and MOVE ON.

    Wasting ALL this time on nothing but foolishness is unexceptable.

    February 23, 2010 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  18. Not Good Enough For Obama/Congress

    If it is not good enough for Obama/Congress then it is not good enough for us peons either(Is American Citizens 2nd Class Now Obama)

    February 23, 2010 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  19. Mike in MN

    The difference between the jobs bill is that while it does not do much good, it does a do a little good and does no harm.
    Obama care would do a little good and a whole massive lot of harm.
    Is Obama willing to subtract a lot from his bill? Or is he going to stand on subtracting nothing and adding a couple of Republican ideas?
    By far the biggest reason a majority of voters have rejected Obamacare is becase of what is in the bills and not what is not. Adding to the bill does not take out the bad.
    Obamacare is too much government, too many mandates, too many tax increases, too large of cuts to Medicare and too much cost. If Obama is not willing to take a lot out, voters will remain opposed to it and Republicans will not vote for it, even if Obama adds a couple more Republican ideas.

    February 23, 2010 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  20. sammieb51

    Without the public option, there is no reform. Without some form of cost containment for hospitals, there is no reform. What folks don't realize here is that if our 'medical' system fails, it fails for all, not just for the few who don't have coverage. And it is close to failing ... our local trauma center is on the brink of bankruptcy and this is not Kansas, so we need it.

    February 23, 2010 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  21. ib

    Another gov. takeover by Obama and company. Vote them out before it's to late. Disgusting.

    February 23, 2010 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  22. aproudmemberoftheunpatrioticmob

    Is this not a sure sign that Obama and the crooks are not serious about this, it is just a big game they are pulling on the country? They are absolutely sanctimonious, disgusting, cheating, lying scum.

    February 23, 2010 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  23. JT the college freshman from MO

    I hope that I can see our congress work together and have the guts and determination to make the tough, hard choice of reforming our healthcare system on Thursday. This healthcare debate has been going on for over a year now, and I have seen that both sides have made errors in judgement; the Democrats for moving slowly and the republicans because every time all but one of them, in the house and the senate, has voted "No"; I read the sentate bill online, and it had nearly 150 conservative amendments to it's structure, and every senate republican voted "no" to the bill three times during the process of the bill passing the senate. Now, think before you go off accusing me of being a far left liberal. Here is actually what liberalism is defined as:
    Liberalism (from the Latin liberalis, "of freedom") is the belief in the importance of individual liberty. Liberals are very diverse in their specific views depending on their understanding of liberty, although most liberals support fundamental ideas like liberal democracy, written constitutions, free and fair elections, equality of opportunity, free trade, and secular society. These ideas and policies are often accepted even among political groups that do not openly profess a liberal ideological orientation. Liberalism encompasses several intellectual trends and traditions, but the dominant variants are social liberalism, which became popular in the 20th century, and classical liberalism, the original incarnation of liberal philosophy.

    Liberalism first became a powerful force in the Age of Enlightenment, rejecting many foundational assumptions that dominated most earlier theories of government, such as hereditary status, established religions, absolute monarchies, and the Divine Right of Kings. Early thinkers like John Locke, who is often regarded as the founder of liberalism as a distinct philosophical tradition, employed the concept of natural rights to argue for the protection of private property, the consent of the governed, and the prevalence of legislative power over autocratic forms of rule. Liberal philosophy unfolded in the context of social contract theory, which maintained that the source of legitimacy for any ruling order ultimately lied with the people, who gave up their authority in return for the rule of law.
    I, personally, am a big supporter of the theory of Evolution; I personally see evidence supporting the fact that we evolved through a series of random, adventitious events, "guided" by a higher spirit, that have made up who we are today.
    In biology, evolution is genetic changes in populations of organisms over successive generations. When a population splits into smaller groups, these groups evolve independently and become new species. Anatomical similarities, geographical distribution of similar species and the fossil record indicate that all species are descended from a common ancestor through a long series of these divergence events, stretching back in a tree of life that has grown over the 4,600 million years of life on Earth.

    Evolution is the product of two opposing forces: processes that constantly introduce variation in traits, and processes that make particular variants become more common or rare. A trait is a particular characteristic such as eye color, height, or a behavior that is expressed when an organism's genes interact with its environment. Genes vary within populations, so organisms show heritable differences (variation) in their traits. The main cause of variation is mutation, which changes the sequence of a gene. Altered genes are then inherited by offspring. There can sometimes also be transfer of genes between species.
    That aside, my point that I am trying to make is that since we all, whether you believe in a God or not, need to come together as one people to help the less fortunate around us; it is imperative that we do so if we are to survive as a nation under one flag that we all love dearly. I am dissapointed at the level of uncompassionate attitudes I do often see around me and on this blog. Since when did it become a moral sin to help out someone who is in need; someone who is hurting; someone who is alone on the streets; someone who is just in need of a friend to be there for them; for someone to be given the basic liberties of life, liberty, property, and the persuit of happiness even if they are gay or straight? Since when did it become such a bad thing to help out your fellow neighbor, and give a bit of money to them?
    America, lets show the world that we can lead again by doing what is right and think with our heads, instead of our emotions. If we can do that, then we will be able to accomplish the seemingly impossible by having, truly having the best system, that any country in history's past, present, or future will envy. That starts with one step foward; healthcare reform, financial reform, clean energy independence, and making sure that everyone no matter who they are has the basic liberties that everyone deserves; life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness.

    February 23, 2010 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |

    Healthcare for Washington ,but,the rest of America gets something else and not the same.I believe that is called DISCRIMINATION.Why is the bill for the citizens not as good as Obama/congress's healthcare.That is why the repubs say NO and the dems should say NO until we all have equal care.

    February 23, 2010 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  25. snood

    Gibbs a man in a palin suit.

    February 23, 2010 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
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