July 21st, 2009
01:06 PM ET
12 years ago

Obama criticizes political motives of health care reform opponents

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama said Tuesday that political motives are behind Republican efforts to block health care reform in Congress.

In a Rose Garden statement, Obama said Republicans "who openly announce their intentions to block this reform" would "rather score political points" than confront an ailing health care system that is draining the federal budget while leaving 46 million Americans uninsured.

"Time and again we've heard excuses to delay and defeat reform," Obama said a day after the chairman of the Republican National Committee and a leading conservative columnist both called for blocking health care legislation being debated in Congress.

CNN Radio: Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley on the health care battle

The president said such tactics "play the politics of the moment instead of putting the interests of the people first."

"Some will try to delay action so that special interests can kill it," Obama said. "We can choose to follow that playbook again, or we can come together and insist this time will be different."


Filed under: Health care • President Obama
soundoff (132 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    Call them out for what they are Mr. President.....OBSTRUCTIONISTS! Michael Steele used the word "expirement" 39 times in his speech yesterday, but still couldn't give any alternative to the democratic plans. I guess when you're in the back of special interest groups, you can care less about what the American people want.

    July 21, 2009 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  2. FORMER republican, NEVER again!

    If it is something that will help average Americans, we already know the republicans are against it. Now if it was for war, Iraq, invading another country, the banks, they would be all for it.

    July 21, 2009 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  3. Mike

    The stench of obamas and the Democrat Leadership health care bill is what is killing it. Do not try to blame Blue Dog Democrats or the Republicans who are trying to stop all the tax and spend and try to get this economy in shape. Bernacke says the economy is showing signs of improvement, well that shows how little he knows or the spin he is trying to pass off as fact again. If the housing market and job market do not come around, there is no improvement in the economy. Basic Economics 101.

    July 21, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    Is he kidding? The "reform" is simply paying off those wh supported him. He is playing the politics as ususal game.

    July 21, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  5. Four and The Door

    I guess that's easier than arguing the merits of the proposals. Obama is making it a political play here, obviously thinking this is the best way he can get support.

    Face it, on it's own merits this proposed Health Care Reform doesn't go very far. The American people can only be fooled so many times before they start looking a little closer.

    July 21, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  6. panem et circenses

    It's already draining the federal budget, his words, but they want to take on more people? That's logic you can believe in...

    And, please, liberals, don't start spouting the talking point of the day about how they are going to contain costs through savings and efficiencies. If it were that simple, the private sector hospitals would have done it long before now. This is going to be just like Medicaid, which is why state governors, even Democrats, are cautioning them on this one.

    July 21, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  7. minnie

    Naturally if they take the time to read it, it will never pass.
    Republicans are standing up for what is right and what this nation was built on. We do not want socialism.

    July 21, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  8. Vancouver, bc

    As a Canadian whose health care system is being falsely maligned by the Republicans, I would be ashamed if Canadians had to line up for free treatment that previously went to people in third world countries as shown on CNN yesterday. I am glad I live in a country that can pleasantly disgaree without the hate I read on these blogs and without the fearmongering and money pored into ads and campaigns.

    Funny how the critics in America always want to boost themselves up as the "best" and the "richest "by attacking other countries when events like Katrina show the realities of so many Americans. Yet, any criticism by other countries is treated with the same ire and namecalling.

    Usualyy someone who always has to boost themselves up at the expense of others has a huge inferiority complex or a deep seated guilt...

    July 21, 2009 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  9. Jimmy the Greek

    Ahh... here comes Obama "the victim".

    Since his scare tactics didn't get the blue-dog democrats to heal... now Obama will create this strawman argument:

    "GOP don't care about you... they just want to deliver payback to Obama."

    Yes – ANYTHING to distract Americans from asking the very simple questions:

    WHY NOW??
    WHY THE US GOVT??

    – Social Security and Medicare going bankrupt
    – The VA is a dismal failure for most Vets
    – The FDA can't come up with a budget
    – We're in the WORST financial crisis since the Great Depression

    Yet democrats want to have the US Government provide healthcare to all citizens??

    July 21, 2009 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  10. S Callahan

    It won't matter what others think come Wednesday...the Lord is getting quite fed up with all the nonesense on this earth....Wednesday is a day of prayers going forth.....and that can be very powerful. Hold onto your seats! smile

    July 21, 2009 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  11. Tiniolives

    Again where is the money coming from, this is moving way to fast
    They say we pay if someone goes to he emergency room, and that is
    Why health care is going up for the insured, so how much is it going to
    Go up for us if we have a Trillion Dollar Tab, who pays?? Yes, we need reform but not just give away the house
    We pay now, but since I pay for my own insurance, I am going have to pay more
    For others. . .I am a small business owner and barely making it in this economy and they are saying you are going to have to foot another Bill, why
    Should I stay in business, just take the rest of my money then I can not afford my coverage and someone can pay for me. . Who that will be I have no idea do you??

    July 21, 2009 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  12. Angie in Pa

    Republicans DO NOT CARE about Health Insurance the only thing they care about is Tearing down the President and the Congress They are Pathetic so sick of them they do not care about the People or this country the only thing they can do is critizize but cannot come up with any solutions for the Problems, they are PATHETIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 21, 2009 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  13. Melissa

    Go Obama, go Obama. Someone in power had to say it. Good for him.

    July 21, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  14. Tony - FLA

    46 million just so happens to include 12 to 16 million illegals. What the heck kind of scam are they trying to run? Not to mention page 16 of the house bill.

    July 21, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  15. Aunt Bea and Opie

    Lets get it passed now,yes we can.Lets also take the names of those opposed and never forget who they are for all future reference.

    July 21, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  16. AncientRiver, New Mexico

    I think we should have gone straight for a single payer system from the get-go. If the Repugs want to complain about Socialism, we should have presented them with something that was at least in the neighborhood. Hind sight. If we were gonna get the name, we should have pressed for actual universal government run health care. I was for the Public Option as a comprimise, but all this has made me realize that single Payer "socialism" is really the only actual choice. Leyts give 'em what we want and really be socialists. we's all be alot better of for it. Insurance companies are spending 1 million a day to lobby while denying claims and cutting services left and right. They need the boot. Not compromise. I mad as hell and so should every one be.

    July 21, 2009 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  17. FL

    The Republicans can't block this if the Dems are on board and Obama knows it. Stop blaming Republicans. There are Dems who are not willing to be railroaded by Obama. The American public doesn't need to be scared into doing what Obama wants. Obama is the one playing politics here. The plan has been reviewed by the Congressional Budget Office and they have said it won't fix the problems and won't save any money. Instead of trying to shove this thing through, Obama needs to back up and come up with a plan that works, that doesn't cut benefits for seniors and doesn't bankrupt the country.

    July 21, 2009 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  18. Maria - Proud Democrat

    The President isn't in tune with the rest of America if he thinks only the Republicans are against his current plans for health care reform.

    Democrats are opposed as well for various reasons including his lack of a solid plan.

    We blindly followed him with the Stimulus mess and now we are in worse shape and Billions in debt.

    So he needs to get the Economy back on track, Americans working again and our Houses out of Foreclosure. Once those things have been accomplished Americans will support his health care project.

    Right now we are too busy trying to keep our homes, jobs and food on the table to consider any changes to health care.

    July 21, 2009 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  19. Out the door in 4

    The arrogance of Obama is incredible. The proposal is horrible, they have no way to pay for it, it will destroy the quality of health care and will cost more jobs............the ones he claims to want to save! Slow down, take their time and do it right......if possible. The government can't run anything efficiently, why would you think they can handle your health care? How's the medicare program working out folks? Almost bankrupt along with social security, but they claim they can cut and control costs.

    July 21, 2009 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  20. GOP = 21st century dodo

    I expect more lengthy paragraphs full of red herrings and straw men from the GOP base. Gotta muddy those waters enough to make people scared.

    Why does the base do this? Why are they so willing to say what they're told to say even when it goes against their own interests?

    July 21, 2009 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  21. franco

    Yesterday, Obama said that pushing health care is not about him!!! it is ALL about him!!!! I get so very sick of libs playing the race card when anyone attempts to be critical of this president.

    July 21, 2009 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  22. yuri

    Especially, the "Waterloo" remark by the demented DeMint of SC, takes the cake. That brutishly bloody bloke is hell bent on just bashin' up BHO rather than offerin' an alternative. We feel he ought to be hung upside down from a tree, and beaten up like a pathetic pinata.

    July 21, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  23. Kevin B

    The veil is finally off of the GOP, they do not even pretend to have average americans interest at heart, they are only about helping special interest and petty political games.

    July 21, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  24. Just My Opinion in Texas

    If this bill is an example of the best that can be done for healthcare "reform" ... I'll pass.

    Socialized medicine is garbage. Obama knows it. Reid knows it. Pelosi knows it. Every member of the House & Senate knows it.

    How do I know??

    Because if the "reform" was any good, every member of the House & Senate AND the POTUS would ditch their current gold-plated healthcare plans for the one they are trying to foist on America.

    Since they aren't jumping at the chance of getting on this plan ... I can infer that their plan is FAR superior to this and that they want no part of the long lines, bureaucratic snafus, denied care, needless suffering and death that the current "reform" bill offers.

    Thanks, Zippy, but I'll pass!

    July 21, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  25. Independent voter, not planning to vote for republicans anytime soon

    At this point the republicans seem to be waging an all out battle over killing healthcare reform, and are therefore waging war against the
    american people.

    I thought they were elected to help people and solve problems. So far I can't think of a single thing they have done that will help anyone.

    I am reminded of what william kristol said when talking about healthcare reform, "throw everything you can at the bill, just kill it", what the hell is that all about doesn't he realize he is talking about killing a bill that would help millions of people?

    Also, I am reminded of what demint said, "this will be obama's waterloo, it will break him" The republicans don't care about helping anyone, they want to make sure nothing gets done, they are continuing to be obstructionists.

    July 21, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
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