March 20th, 2010
02:03 PM ET
8 years ago

In unusual step, Obama heads to the hill Saturday


President Obama heads to Capitol Hill Saturday in a final push before the House votes on the latest version of the health care bill. (Getty Images)

Washington (CNN) - President Obama plans to address the House Democratic caucus Saturday to make a final plea for the health care overhaul, a day ahead of an expected House vote.

Four Democratic officials familiar with the plans told CNN on Friday that the president will speak Saturday to the lawmakers. The pitch will be made on Capitol Hill, White House aides said. No further details were immediately available.

The House of Representatives is set to vote Sunday on a sweeping $875 billion reform plan that cleared the Senate in December, as well as another $65 billion in compromise changes to the measure.

If the Senate bill passes the House, Obama will sign it into law. If the package of changes is passed, it will be taken up by the Senate.

Democratic leaders are trying to round up the 216 necessary votes to pass the bill. According to CNN's latest count, 29 Democrats plan to vote against the legislation. Thirty-eight Democratic "no" votes are needed to kill the bill.

Multiple Democratic leadership sources told CNN that Democrats have over 200 "yes" votes, though it was not clear Friday night how close Democrats were to securing the votes they need.

Filed under: Health care • President Obama
soundoff (254 Responses)
  1. Jersey George

    I wonder if people with no jobs and no health insurance are ever polled, or is it just those who have good jobs and health insurance. If so, what a selfish country we live in everybody's out for themselves and could care less about the middle class and the poor. This country is run by old, white male politicians who are bought and paid for by corporate America and lobbyists, and elected by voter's who are cut from the same rotten cloth as them. I call it
    "Pay-to-Play". These "bought" politicians are no better than former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich who's being charged for "Pay-to-Play". Oh my goodness, it's the same thing that's happening in Washington. "More than 50% of the country has been against George W. Bush's and Dick Cheney's "illegal" Iraq War for years and yet we're still there. Talk about a dictatorship and not listening to the American people. The same is now true about the Afghan War. Talk about a waste of human life on both sides and trillions of dollars. I don't hear any outrage from fiscal conservatives or the pro-life advocates.

    March 20, 2010 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  2. jane

    I am behind the President completely on his efforts to get this desperately needed bill passed, and along with many others, I wish him well. The fact that the health insurance industry, together with unnecessarily exorbitant costs of health care, have been allowed to get to this point, and for so long now, is a black mark on this country. They have brought government control on themselves.

    March 20, 2010 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  3. Bob in Pa

    Mr. President,

    The end does not always justify the means.

    St Peter

    March 20, 2010 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  4. Paul H

    It's crazy to have abortion as a part of Health care debate! I mean Abortion in most, and I mean most cases is because the women doesn't want a baby, therefore it's being used for birth-control, making it a choice!
    "Choice" the very word used to fight the cause in the whole Abortion debate. Remember "Pro-Choice, and Pro-Life".
    Tax payers should not have to pay for someone's choice! This is beyond common sense, and it's what I think is the driving force behind the whole health care bill. Abortion is already big business in this country, and if this health care bill goes through it will be even bigger business.
    Follow the money people. Really listen to the things your Representatives are saying, or not saying. It's really sick the things they are hiding from us.

    March 20, 2010 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  5. sifto77

    this should make his ratings drop another few points......

    March 20, 2010 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  6. Tom

    Quit trying to screw with my health care!

    March 20, 2010 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  7. Marcus Tate

    Why are they ramming this through on the weekend? They will pay in November, and I can't wait.

    March 20, 2010 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  8. Mike in MN

    Obama and the Democrats believe they can use the CBO projeceted deficit reductions from Obamacare to win independents back. They are correct that the defiicts are the top issue with independents.
    But based on polls, a majority of voters including a majority of independents believe the cost of Obamacare will be much higher than the CBO estimate and that it will increase the deficit not decrease it. A new Rasmussen poll shows 81% of voters believe this. It seems this beleif is not based on the CBO projecting faulty numbers but on the current state of two other big entitlement porgrams that are on the verge of bankrupting American, Social Security and Medicare. Both these programs cost far more than they were originally supposed to and both have been mismanaged by the government to the point of bankrupting our nation. A majority of voters simply believe the government will mess up Obamacare in the same way and it will cost a lot more than the CBO says.
    Obama has claimed over and over that Obamacare is needed to control the deficits. Obama's new $3.8 trillion budget comes with a CBO projection of annual deficits averaging $980 billion for the next ten years, with 1.25 trillion in 2020. The CBO says these deficits are dangerous and unsustainable. Obama care is supposed to reduce the deficits over the next 10 years by 138 billion, that is about 14 billion a year. That would bring down the annual deficits to an average of 966 billion with 1.236 trillion in 2020. Still dangerous and unsustainable. I don't think anyone, independents included, are going to believe that Obamacare will save us from the deficits that threaten to bankrupt our nation.

    March 20, 2010 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  9. Sandy

    To quote from the Beverly HillBilllies:

    "There he goes, spending our money again!"

    March 20, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  10. Mike in MN

    Obama is showing how stupid he thinks voters are by comparing passing Obamacare to the passage of Social Security and Medicare.
    Social Security and Medicare are two big reasons to not pass Obamacares. Both programs have cost far far more than the were originally projected to. And for decades the government has robbed both programs of their surpulus and spent it on the general budget instead of setting it aside. Now they are both running on a deficit and the there the decades of surplus money is long gone. Both programs threaten to bankupt our nation because the government has betrayed the trust of taxpayers in managing these two programs. Instead of fixing these two programs Obama wants to create a third new entitlement program which a new Rasmuessen poll shows 81% of voters believe will wind up costing a lot more than the CBO projects.
    The history of Social Security and Medicare tell us that we should never trust our govenment with another similar big entitlement program. Obamacare must not pass and if it does it must be repealed by Republicans by 2012. A majority of Americans have learned the lesson that these types of programs do not work. Time to find a better way.

    March 20, 2010 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  11. The American people

    If excessive force is required to enact unpopular legislation impacting all citizens of a nation, one need know nothing else to seek its defeat.

    March 20, 2010 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  12. Pragmatic

    Those who speak for "the people" usually don't speak for me. I haven't been polled! You talk about half – your half – and totally ignore the "other half" – who are just as American as you are.

    They usually forget Tom "THE HAMMER" Delay – keeping the vote open for over three hours as he hunted down republicans, dragging them back to vote, holding their twisted arms ... even now republicans are threatening anyone who votes "yes" with holds on nominations etc.

    Fear and smear: Death panels & the Mushroom Cloud. the GOP lies!

    March 20, 2010 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  13. John

    George makes perfect sense. But who listens to the people anymore? The Dems are trashing our country to make "history." Sad and scary!

    March 20, 2010 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  14. stinger

    The push for Health Care is the greatest thing in my life. Citizens of America will be allowed to get some health care. Preexisting conditions will be gone, and that is great for America.
    Americans didn't have a problem sending Americans to get killed in our two current wars, why should they have a problem paying for health care for all. People didn't care they lost lots of money in their savings and retirement accounts, they didn't give a whisper then, why are they all upset about this.
    This is good for America.

    March 20, 2010 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |


    You are a low information reader. Stop watching Faux news and listening to Rush Limbaugh.

    March 20, 2010 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  16. Sandy

    Blah, Blah, Blah. I believed in Obama, voted for him and gave him a chance. Now I don't listen to anything he says, because he's proven that all he does is lie. He just says whatever he thinks people want to hear.
    Then he makes back room deals, just like the Republicans did for the last 8 years.

    I want my vote back!

    March 20, 2010 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  17. bgt

    Thanks a lot BO – now you can screw up healthcare like you've screwed up everything else.

    Jan 21, 2013 – Change We Can Believe In!!

    March 20, 2010 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  18. Monster Zero

    I would love to give Obama and his progressives a final push, like over the political cliff of never return! You know, I bet we will give him and his a little push in 2010 and then a GIANT BOOT IN THE A$$ IN 2012!

    March 20, 2010 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  19. BS Bill Misleading Americans

    Unfortunately it's the wrong hill he needs to go to!

    March 20, 2010 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  20. Bassman

    If this bill passes, Pres. Obama will claim victory. The truth is the Democrats own the White House, both houses of Congress, and a friendly press. This bill should have been law a year ago. The one thing the Demorcats will never own is public opinion. "We the People" have kept this bill from becoming law for this long. The reason its taken this long for a vote is because Americans have stood against it. Too bad Washington wasn't listening.

    March 20, 2010 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  21. GO Away George

    @George March 20th, 2010 10:52 am ET
    Sorry George ,The Tea Party IDIOTS are all cowards spreading LIES
    to Bone heads like you.!!!!

    March 20, 2010 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  22. ownopinion

    I am always amazed when I read posts from people who continue to maintain their biased posts (ie. I'm not republican, do not work for the govt.). Maybe if you actually researched and read the bill prior to making a post you would actually know what you are pushing for, but then again, those that don't research don't know the truth. They spout their liberal/progressive talking points that they hear from CNN, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, or Our country needs to go back to our roots about 80-90 years ago and actually relearn how a man becomes a man. It is not a given, you earn your integrity, you don't ask or expect handouts. If you want Health coverage, find a job, it does not matter the style or class of job, work to provide for your family and earn your respect. It truly is correct when Historians make claims that History will repeat itself. The good ole' USA is following in the same footsteps as the Romans & Carthaginian empires. Our Govt. is destroying this country from within and we are about to implode unless something drastic happens to shift the attitude of entitlement era.

    March 20, 2010 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  23. Jerry - Florida

    Of course the Liar-in- Chief is running scared. But his day is coming. Probably sooner that he and moronic, unpatriotic administration thinks. too bad Hillary got stuck with lying bunch.

    March 20, 2010 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  24. Tina Follansbee

    It is time to get health care done. I have an aunt who can't get insurance due to a pre-existing condition and a sister whose health care is so expensive that it threatens her well being and her ability to hold onto her house. (And it is just the catastrophic kind that hardly pays for anything yet she has to have it.) I have good health care through my work but it gets more and more expensive every year.

    I applaud those in Washington who have the courage to vote for this health care bill. It may not be everything everyone wants but it is a begining. It took a lot to get Social Security and Medicare passed in the past and it is time to vote yes for health care NOW.

    March 20, 2010 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  25. BS Bill Misleading Americans

    Robin, you can't spell and your verbage is poor. You must be a democrat.

    March 20, 2010 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
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