September 29th, 2007
02:20 PM ET
16 years ago

Bush blasts Congress for not passing spending bills

Bush was critical of Congress for not passing spending bills before the end of the fiscal year.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Bush lambasted Congress Saturday for not passing spending bills before the fiscal year ended, and signed emergency legislation to keep the government running for the next seven weeks.

"Congress failed in its most basic responsibility: to pass the spending bills that fund the day-to-day operations of the government," Bush said in his weekly radio address.

"I do thank the Congress for passing this temporary measure, and for passing it without any new spending, new policies or new projects," the president added.

Earlier this week, House Appropriations Chairman Dave Obey, D-Wis., responded to similar criticism from the president, saying he had already talked to the White House about a "clean" continuing resolution and accused the president of manufacturing "a disagreement when there is none."

"This is the time when we ought to be sitting down to work out reasonable compromises with each other instead of issuing phony challenges or posing for political holy pictures," Obey said in a statement.

The president warned yet again that he would veto congressional plans to expand state-administered children's health programs, calling the increase in funding and coverage of State Children's Health Insurance Program, or SCHIP, "irresponsible."

The congressional plans "would dramatically expand this program beyond its original intent," Bush said. "And they know I will veto it."

However, the president also said Saturday that he appreciated how the emergency spending bill he signed handled the disagreement over SCHIP. "It is good that they kept the program running while they try to work out a more responsible approach," he said of Congress.

The program provides federal money to states to provide health insurance coverage for children, and is set to expire Sunday, the end of the fiscal year. However, both the White House and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi have said that if Bush vetoes the bill, the program will be funded at its current level until the impasse can be resolved.

On Thursday night, the Senate vote 67-29 to expand the program, increasing its budget of $5 billion to $12 billion for the next five years. Two days earlier, the House defied Bush's threats of a veto, and passed its version 265-159, short of the two-thirds majority needed to override a veto.

Also on Saturday, a 12-year-old boy, Graeme Frost, delivered the Democratic weekly radio address, discussing his experience with SCHIP. Frost said he and his sister were severely injured in a car accident three years ago.

"The hospital bills were huge," Frost, of Baltimore, said. "We got the help we needed because we had health insurance for us through the SCHIP program."

"I just hope the president will listen to my story and help other kids be as lucky as me."

Filed under: Congress • President Bush
soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. Alice Newman Center Harbor NH

    ... of course Chris ignores the fact that the increased spending will cover 4 million more children – you know – those "childrens who can learn." as the ever articulate president said yesterday.

    Chris also ignores the GOP who bailed out last December without passing any spending bills – gloating and leaving the mess to the new Congress.

    Also not mentioned is the fact that Bush has not vetoed any spending bill – not the bridge to nowhere or any other ... now – on a death-bed conversion – he's fiscally prudent –

    Fact is: under Bush's "leadership" spending has increased at an alarming rate ... but continue to drink the kool-aide and watch Faux News. You'll feel better soon.

    September 30, 2007 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  2. colony14 author

    For those of you who've never read the Constitution, it requires that any powers not specifically granted to the federal government are delegated to the individual states. Yes, Bush is a big spender (who in Washington isn't), but he should veto the illegal bill. You can't always have everything you want paid for by someone else. (Oh, wait, I just described the platforms of most candidates!)

    September 30, 2007 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  3. Chris, Middletown, CT

    Not ignoring anything...why not 100 billion – or a cool round trillion – "its for the children" wears on everyone – sounds like an argument from the teachers union when they are trying to up their pay....and now its the liberal battle cry – how about we start to take fiscal responsibility of our own children – I am so for a "helping hand" – but I would think that the original people on the SCHIP plan...are still on it...and will be until they are beyond the coverage age...teach a man to fish....yet....the entitlement program people leave their programs open ended....I guess its like talking to a wall....I have to admit...the DNC has you programmed well...(nows the time you say "but we spent a trillion on the war in Iraq"....)

    September 30, 2007 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  4. Carl, Seattle, WA

    Government-sponsored medical care is a touchy subject. Especially since conservatives have a tendency to only consider such programs and supporting "freeloaders" and illegal immigrants (I should know that this is their perception... I'm a Republican). The problem is that this conservative view is amazingly shallow. I think most Americans would be alarmed if they knew how much our current medical system DEPENDS on government-supported health care. Through the guise of Medicare, Medicaid, SCHIP, Alien Emergency Medical (AEM), etc., the government is essentially supporting hospitals, clinics, etc that would otherwise financially suffer.

    The nation's health system depends on the likes of SCHIP to support it. Otherwise, laws such as the EMTALA (the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act), which essentially requires hospitals to provide medical treatment to individuals regardless of their ability to pay, will bankrupt the system. If that happens, even the conservatives won't have anywhere to go for healthcare treatment. There won't be enough financially viable medical providers (and the cost will skyrocket).

    The President needs to understand this dynamic before vetoing expanded funding for SCHIP. All Americans need to understand this.

    September 30, 2007 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  5. mary

    abandon American Children, shame on you bush.thats terrible.all the money going for this so called war.

    September 30, 2007 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  6. Ron Nebraska

    Oh these kids should just pull themselves up by their bootstraps and make something of themselves and stop wanting a handout of my tax dollars. ( Auditioning for a spot on the Fox News Channel..........or maybe Rush Limbaughs' comedy show)

    September 30, 2007 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  7. AJ; Montpelier, VT

    It's amazing how blind the Bush supporters are. Too bad he's a weasel and not a lemming; then they could all follow him over the cliff.

    October 1, 2007 08:33 am at 8:33 am |
  8. Randy S. Lawton, OK

    People, get a grip. The new SCHIP will cover kids in a family of four with an annual income of nearly $80000. That's ridiculous, I have no problem with supplying health insureance to kids or even adults who truly need the help. But when a family can afford their own insurance, they don't need handouts.

    And to whoever it was that said CNN was the real news network, please pass the peyote.

    October 1, 2007 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  9. RightyTighty

    Come on Bush, sign that middleclass heathcare bill.

    I'm planning a vacation to the Grand Cayman Island's later this year and would love to spend that extra cash I usually spend on my 5 kids healthcare. And you can bet that with 5 kids, I'll be getting it.. Government assistance to the rich, I mean middleclass, is GREAT!!

    October 1, 2007 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  10. therealist

    Just standard operating procedure for this pitiful 110th liberal Congress. What have they accomplished?? The WORST EVER.

    A new standard of low has been set, congradulations dems...

    October 1, 2007 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  11. Ryan Indianapolis

    That little twirp has no right to be criticizing anyone. He wouldn't even get a law into effect to protect our power grids which terrorists can fool with and bring down 2/3 of our country's power for months. Which would be a disaster. He has been a total failure for our country and our people.

    Posted By laurinda,ny : September 29, 2007 3:42 pm

    Speak for yourself you lunatic. GW Bush has had to make tough decisions that neither you or your insane kind could ever muster the strength to make. He has kept this country safe and the economy is just as good as the Clinton years, so please shut your mouth and actually do some research on the issues and stop reading headlines. Please answer a question for me. What is so bad right now???????Come on please tell me????We are killing terriost over on foreign soil instead of here. We have been safe in our homeland, unemployment is low...I could go on....You just want to blame your sorry life on someone and you blame Bush for everything. Enough is Enough,,,,Me and my family support Mr. Bush during this time in history and I hope when the history books are written you can look back and be ashamed of your actions and words.

    October 1, 2007 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  12. Ryan Indianapolis

    Yeah it's really irresponsible to give kids healthcare!

    Posted By Ed,Ellenville,New York : September 29, 2007 6:35 pm

    Hey Ed read the Bill you moron,,,it is for kids whos parents make 80k a year therefore those families dont need the governments help but the Democrats are always for handouts so they are trying to make Bush look like the bad guy... PLEASE DEMOCRATS READ BEFORE YOU MAKE INCREDIBLLY IGNORANT COMMENTS

    October 1, 2007 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  13. Chris, Middletown, CT

    Ryan is correct – I think the Democrats in the group will need to look at the arguments presented remove the rhetoric...and just stick to the point – the country is doing well...we are relatively safe...its a tough time to be president – real estate pricing is high....if you want a job there are jobs all around....I know gas prices are high...and along with the trillion dollar price tag for the war (Democrats – your party approved the expenditures) – you guys blame Bush for the gas prices too....but...gas is traded on the international market...look it up....please move away from the Michael Moore watching side....more towards the center....Ed and I have agreed to push each side...can you help?

    October 1, 2007 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  14. Mark, Akron OH

    If by chance the veto is overridden, then you will see a stampede of the wealthy immediately start to find the loopholes to put their kids on the program. No you say? Well how about these 2 words, "Farm Subsidies".

    October 1, 2007 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  15. Cheryl Atlanta, GA

    What a disgrace. A president who spends billions of dollars on failed policies abroad, yet is unwilling to provide the basics for the people within his OWN nation. Bush is an utter disgrace. Shame on him and to anyone who supports him and his atrocities.

    October 2, 2007 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
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