February 25th, 2010
05:20 PM ET
4 years ago

Analysts: Health summit a 'stunt' and 'spectacle'

Washington (CNN) – Heated partisan exchanges and in-depth policy discussions at the bipartisan health care summit on Thursday are unlikely to sway both parties in finding common ground, analysts said as the summit was going on.

One said the summit makes an argument against televising hearings. Another said it will reinforce doubts about whether Washington can resolve the health care impasse.

"I think it's reasonable to expect that an exchange like this is not going to change the public's skepticism about the way Washington works," said Michael Murakami, a visiting professor of government at Georgetown University.

Murakami added that the summit is a "big PR stunt" where "nothing is going to be decided."

"This is just the two sides putting their view in front of the media so they can try and rally their support as the legislative battle begins."


Presidential historian Douglas Brinkley said the summit "wasn't much more than a TV spectacle."

"Only the infirm or unemployed could have possibly sat home and watched it all," said Brinkley, a professor of history at Rice University. "Instead, what everybody will see tonight on news broadcasts are the sparks of tension between [President] Obama and [Sen. John] McCain. It's like the 2008 election never ended."

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Filed under: Health care
soundoff (107 Responses)
  1. Derek

    Maybe it was a stunt... But GOPers convinced me that the public option is a must. Sooner or later!

    February 25, 2010 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  2. SC Pub No Longer

    "A stunt?" How can anyone watching CNN know? Over one half of it was interrupted by the constant analysis of the CNN talking mouths!!

    February 25, 2010 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  3. Bob

    No stunt ,we got to see the Republicans showing their true colors without talking points and someone to call them on the lies. Case in point Boner yeh Boner telling about abortion and being called out because of his lies.

    February 25, 2010 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  4. Cliff

    Did you really expect anything from this?
    It was a publicity stunt arranged by Obama's staff to try to expose those opposed to his HealthLess-Care program.
    I think, in the long run, this will prove to be just one more example of his inadequate leadership.
    When you realize less than 10% of his apointees have "business experiece" you can begin to understand this 1,000 pages plus of government entitlements...at the expense of the taxpayers!
    His "close buds" have spent their lives eating at the expense of the American taxpayer.
    Welcome to Obama-Land!!!

    February 25, 2010 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  5. Janice

    What do you expect from NObama (empty suit) and dumocraps(empty minds).Empty suit/hot air and promises.Just a socialist agenda.Go ahead you mezziah followers,follow the O Great One into complete failure.Hey how is that "hopey/changey stuff working fur ya?

    February 25, 2010 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  6. givemecrat

    Another way for barry boi to get his air time for this week
    has anyone kept count of how many times this wanna be superstar has been on tv? Perhaps there in lies the reason nothing is getting done or maybe he just to document his life he has become another rosie nobody wants to see all that all the time give us a break barry boi and go the office once in awhile

    February 25, 2010 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    ccn should talk to people who need help insurance not the rich people, cnn never talk to middle class or low income families. Sorry! I am tried of the high school drama class .

    February 25, 2010 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    help!!!!! we need insurance today!!!!

    February 25, 2010 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  9. Richard in California

    This is a partisan "stunt" and "spectacle" because the Republicans refuse to take their fingers out of their ears and open their eyes. If they would actually acknowledge that the Health Summit is an opportunity to truly share good ideas, instead of merely attacking President Obama without offering anything positive and productive, the Summit would not be such a "spectacle."

    More proof that the Senate should pass a Health Reform Act that follows the will of the people, using the rules of the Senate, via reconciliation.

    February 25, 2010 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  10. Denna

    I think that President Obama should use reconciliation and get the ball rolling on health insurance. The Republicans and their minions are never going to get on board, even though Americans are dying. Someone has to use common sense and that means the Democrats.

    February 25, 2010 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  11. Texas Jack

    Certainly it was. Obama the anti-Christ already has his plans in place. Us dumb Americans out here who put this thing in The White House need everything they can get coming to them that this moron MUSLIM is going to bestow.

    February 25, 2010 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  12. Perusing-through

    NOT FAR BELOW THE SURFACE . . . . .

    . . . . . Republicans are kicking themselves saying "Why didn't Bush & Cheney think of a summit"? :-)

    February 25, 2010 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  13. bridgette

    There is just no pleasing some people. They are sitting down talking no they didn't hash anything out but atleast someone is trying to help the American public. Geesh give me a break.

    February 25, 2010 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  14. dan smith

    Obama-Rude to the end. Where's that bipartisanship he's always talking about.

    February 25, 2010 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  15. dan smith

    Obama has NO CLASS.

    February 25, 2010 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  16. JES

    When will you listen to the majority of the people scrap this bill and start over.

    You just might come up with a bill that will make sense.

    February 25, 2010 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  17. dan smith

    Impeach Obama now, before he ruins the Country anymore.

    February 25, 2010 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  18. jane

    I think the Democrats should go ahead and accomplish what they were elected to do, that is, pass their health care bill. It is desperatedly needed, and I don't think anyone cares whether they use "reconciliation - whatever that is - or whatever means they need to bring it off.

    February 25, 2010 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  19. savemedicine

    How come no one is talking about the 21% re-imbursement cut that ALL doctors are going to have come March 1st (who take Medicare)? If this goes through (with no repeal in the SGR) then there will be a lot less doctors in practice because it will not be economically viable to maintain practices. So that is what they should be talking about!

    February 25, 2010 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  20. allan

    Obama has Bush-blaming Disease. And it in pathological level. He need to be in mental institution with teleprompter so he can sdpeak to the wall all day long.

    February 25, 2010 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  21. Micah

    According to Republicans, it never did end...they are determined to chop Obama's legs off at every opportunity. They had a chance today to show that they had more ideas than "start over," but they do not. We are not scrapping this. We are not giving in to the fallacies or the made up crap from the right. We are going to reform health care, with or without them.

    February 25, 2010 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  22. Ethan

    The Republicans MADE it a spectacle. That was their whole idea. Republicans are scumbaggers who have blocked health care reform for DECADES. PASS. THE. BILL. RECONCILE IT ASAP!

    February 25, 2010 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  23. elana

    I hope that the Obama Administration continues to broadcast summits such as this one. It is good to see the demeanor of both sides of the aisle. One request I have is to PLEASE broadcast the entire "summit" without interruption. Analyzing the result can be accomplished AFTER completion of the summit. Personally, I don't think it was a "stunt" and/or a "spectacle". It showed the American people WHY we are at the crossroad we are in politics!! Some will NEVER consider the word "compromise". Others are pushing forward with conviction. I believe we will have a healthcare bill very shortly.

    February 25, 2010 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  24. TonyInLargo

    It appears that even "so called analysts" can't understand Democracy in Action with a progressive President at the helm.

    This President is calling the bluff of the Republicans "that they are willing to govern in a minority partnership" with positive ideas, hence the Health Summit.

    To put it bluntly, it's put-up or shut-up with the American public as the judge. Here they have no place to "snipe and hide", "put-up smoking mirrors" or lie. They either engage in real conversation and exchange of ideas to negotiate or sit back and watch Democrats do it alone.

    If Republicans have any sense at all, they will realize the precarious position that they have been put in by this very intelligent, patriotic, caring and cagey President. If they have any sense at all, they will participate in a positive manner, negotiate and be part of it. Anything else will be a moral, philosophical and practical defeat for them.

    February 25, 2010 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  25. m smith

    also what they will see is how bad the repugs look. Bunch of whiney selfish babies. No ideas. McCaine should retire . The president is right the campaign is over. Get over it. Gee the presiden ttalked for all that time without a teleprompter. Did you see all the repos with notes. I guess they aren't to bright. We want health care lets just by pass these morons.

    February 25, 2010 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
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