July 17th, 2009
04:50 PM ET
12 years ago

Democrats splinter in contentious health care reform debate

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/07/17/health.care/art.obama.health.care.cnn.jpg caption="President Obama says health care is at the top of his domestic agenda."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - The fight over health care reform took center stage on Capitol Hill on Friday, as the House Democratic leadership stepped up its push for passage of a bill before the August congressional recess.

An influential group of Senate moderates, however, broke with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and President Obama by releasing a letter urging a slower timetable.

Obama, who has put health care reform at the top of his domestic agenda, pushed Congress to get the job done.

"Now is not the time to slow down, and now is certainly not the time to lose heart," the president said from the White House.

"Those who are betting against this happening this year are badly mistaken," he said. "It will happen this year."

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Filed under: Health care
soundoff (88 Responses)
  1. Steve (the real one)

    Dear Congress, The President gave you the deadline and you have the marching orders! Move out like you have been told!
    Oh wait, the President doesn't control Congress! Maybe he forgot, you work for us! My bad!

    July 17, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  2. Al-Chesapeake

    When is the President and Congress (Senators and House of Representatives) going to include their health care programs with what they are shoving down our throats. It is has been too many years now for them to get a free ride with the benefits they receive from health care. We are all American Citizens... Bet Pelozi and
    Reid won't let this get on the Health Reform bill..

    July 17, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  3. Jess

    Like roaches running from the light. You know we are a FAR left society – yea right. These jokers have to get re-elected and Nancy "no charm" Pelosi isn't going to help. A pretty suit and an inarticulate speech from Madam speaker won't work either.

    July 17, 2009 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  4. not even surprised

    kick any dem out of office if they don't support an overhaul of this pathetic excuse for a healthcare system. grow a pair! all they care about is getting elected and getting sweetheart deals from nefarious pals. appauling.

    for those of you who think this is some sinister obama socialist plot, better make sure none of you nor any of your relatives are getting disability, social security, veteran, or medicade.

    i thought americans all loved this country. apparently a good chunk want a failed state with only mega corporations telling us what to do and think.

    July 17, 2009 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  5. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    Splinter? More like a crown of thorns.

    July 17, 2009 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  6. Fla.

    Thank you, Mr. President.

    Too many Americans are sufferring under the current status quo based on exorbitant profits for insurance companies and looming potential of bankruptcy.

    It is past time–healthcare reform now for ALL Americans.

    July 17, 2009 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  7. yuri

    Let the in-fightin' inject fuel and foment a lot of fiery exchanges and don't forget the Blue Dog Dems for one second.

    July 17, 2009 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  8. KG Texas

    Now IS the time to slow down. The American public will not accept this bill to be shoved down our throats. If this happens, every person who voted for it will be thrown out of office. They can count on that.
    And since when do we have a president who "orders" what will be passed and what will not be passed. He might want to look in the mirror, he is only a man, not God. I think he forgets that at times.
    We do need health care reform, but it needs to be well planned and well thought out. Not this massive screw up that is going on now.

    July 17, 2009 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  9. barrystash

    I kinda wish Barry gets his wildest dream fulfilled. It will destroy the economy and there will be such a revolt that he and the Marxicrats will thrown out on their asses in 2010 and 2012.

    July 17, 2009 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  10. Kelby In Houston, TX

    It is a shame that the party that wanted to get universal healthcare reform is the party standing in the way
    I said it befor and I'll say it again
    Univeral healthcare is the will of the people. If our current elected officials will not comply...we will elect officials that will.
    Don't worry about Republicans. They are irrelevent. We are tired of people going into bankruptcy for health

    July 17, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  11. Sue Ohio

    Our Congressmen need to remember that they are representing our needs. We need health care reform. They are putting their party above the American people. Enough of these partisan politics... we are all Americans and deserve affordable health care.

    I say any Congressman that votes against health care reform should forfeit their medical coverage. We pay for it. I don't think they are earning it.

    July 17, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  12. Susan

    We're talking about spending a lot of money without knowing any of the logistics. To top it off, we already have three government health care programs: Medicare, Medicaid and VA. Why don't we just improve the programs we have instead of creating a NEW one?

    July 17, 2009 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  13. gt

    obama looks like a deer in a cars head lights.....scared ... untested,,,looking for help and no ones is there but a ship of fools...

    July 17, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  14. Southerner

    I have a feeling the messages against Universal Health Care come from people who work for the insurance companies. I do not care what happens with the insurance companies and I bet most of the American People feel the same. Your socialist, free-ride jargon isnt going anywhere. This is about the insurance companies not some politician's talking points.

    Why is it ok to redistribute my money to pay for some Corporation's income tax?? You pay income tax as ordinary for your dividend income like I have to pay for my W2 income. I also do not want my money redidstributed to Iraq, they can go down in flames for all I care.

    Republicans want to redistribute my money so their buddies can sell us more weapons at a premium.

    July 17, 2009 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  15. GI Joe

    NO VACATION until the work is done. No work, no pay.

    We know who you are – WE VOTE.

    July 17, 2009 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  16. The Party of HELL NO!

    "Now is not the time to slow down"

    Yes, because this turd won't pass after 2010!
    So cram cram cram all the steaming piles of crap you can now!

    July 17, 2009 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  17. addon

    Is it really fair to criticize Obama after only 6 months in office? How can people say he's the worst president in history after only 6 months in the position? This is the worst economy in our lifetimes; yet, people are calling our President the worst names possible despite his efforts.

    Granted, Bush was bashed daily but I do not recall it being in the 1st 6 months of his president. I don't believe Obama has take the mantle of "worst president ever" from Bush ....in less than 6 months (?)

    Come on people....instead of posting hateful, republican talking points, please qualify your statements if you are intellectually capable of doing so. Otherwise, get off your mom's computer and go back to school

    July 17, 2009 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  18. MartiM, Plano, TX

    It is more important to get it right than to get it fast. Certainly a sense of urgency is needed to keep momentum going, but to push through something that may be poorly conceived, misunderstood and potentially counterproductive would be disastrous.

    July 17, 2009 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  19. Noah

    We are having problems funding Medicare and Medicaid and we want to start a new program? That is the kind of logic government uses and any Congressman with any salt is going to vote against it.

    July 17, 2009 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  20. GI Joe

    Watch MSNBC if you want to know what goes on at C-Street. CNN can't spare any time for the secretive society.

    July 17, 2009 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  21. Mark,B'ham,Al.

    It will happen whether it is a good or bad program just so the President can get it started so when it does not work they can get socialized one payer health care system! Also so Obama can take care of his friends and put a check mark by his accomplishements that the liberal press will lie to everyone about how it is working just like the stimulous is.

    July 17, 2009 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  22. DA

    This is what I don't understand about the Democrats, it seem they can never stick together on anything. I have to say this about the REPUBLICAN even when they are DEAD wrong they all stick together!!!
    When the leader of your party needs your help, I would think you would want to help them out!!!
    I can see right now next year the Democrats will be out of Congress!!!

    July 17, 2009 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  23. Fair is Fair

    Hey Dutch –

    Latest Rasmussen poll shows 50% now in favor of the phantom public option. Sinking fast.

    July 17, 2009 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  24. Proud Member..Party of No

    Finally some democrats are realizing what a bill of goods they were sold in the last election. Don't believe the media and don't believe what Obama says.....look at what he does.

    July 17, 2009 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  25. GI Joe

    Blue Cross Blue Shield rates going up over 30% this coming year. Just what the Republicans want.

    July 17, 2009 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
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