July 23rd, 2009
03:15 PM ET
13 years ago

Obama rips GOP in health care forum

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/07/23/art.obama07237.gi.jpg caption="President Obama again Thursday accused top Republicans of playing politics with health care reform."]SHAKER HEIGHTS, Ohio (CNN) - President Barack Obama took his health care offensive on the road Thursday, ripping top Republicans for playing politics with his top domestic legislative priority.

"We have never been closer to achieving quality, affordable health care for all Americans," Obama said in a packed town hall meeting outside Cleveland, Ohio.

"But at the same time, there are those that would seek to delay and defeat reform. ... We had one Republican strategist told his party that even though they may want to compromise, it's better politics to 'go for the kill.'"

Another Republican senator, the president said, had argued "that defeating health reform is about 'breaking' me - when it's really the American people who are being broken by rising health care costs and declining coverage."

The president also set his sights on Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele.

Steele, Obama said, is "seeking to stall our efforts" and "recently went so far as to say that health insurance reform was happening 'too soon.' ... I think that's a little odd. We've been talking about health reform since the days of Harry Truman."

Obama concluded that "reform may be coming too soon for some in Washington, but it's not soon enough for the American people."

Top Republican strategist Bill Kristol recently wrote on a conservative Web site that for the GOP "this is no time to pull punches. Go for the kill."

Last week, Republican Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina was quoted as telling the group Conservatives for Patients Rights, which opposes Obama's health care plan, that "if we're able to stop Obama on this, it will be his Waterloo. It will break him."

Filed under: Health care • President Obama • Republicans
soundoff (82 Responses)
  1. John

    While the Republican comment was blasphemy, quit blaming just them, Obama. I voted for you, but you are playing politics with the best of them. You are blaming the other side when it is the "blue dog" Dems that are wary of the plan. By the way, I am hearing about how this plan is going to take care of the other 10% that don't have insurance. However, seems everyone on a plan through their employer is getting shortchanged.

    July 23, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  2. TangledThorns

    Oh Obama, you silly inexperienced man. Can't you count? The Dems have a super majority. Pretty shameless to blame this on the GOP.

    July 23, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  3. John

    Marty, please think before you type. Single Payor is the only way to go? Let's go from one extreme to the next. We think we are having difficulty with our economy now...

    July 23, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  4. Gwen K.Smith

    Attention all citizen who voted for Change and Health Care reform. Help President Obama in our fight for this to happen NOW.

    Contact your representives in Congress Now. Let them know we want Health Care Reform. NOT A RECESS/VACATION. Their action will show who they turly are and it citizens of the Nation and Health Care Reform are a priority. This sacrify to the take action now by 8/7/09 wii be the proof.

    Health Care Reform is not new. What to do is not New. Your ponification, claims of being a fiscal conservative, Blue Dog/Coward, and the interest of American people to gett them the best affordable insurance is so disingenuous. Self interest, money, and power is all you care about.

    July 23, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  5. Kim

    Republicans are being bought by the insurance and pharmaceutical industries.

    July 23, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  6. Gracie, MD

    Republicans either STEP UP or get out of the way.

    President Obama is letting them know that the personal attacks and constant complaints is NOT acceptable. Either STEP UP or GET OUT of the way.

    July 23, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  7. Melissa

    This cannot be delayed. They should not be allowed to recess until its dealt with. I thought Pelosi put her foot down about that yesterday.

    You don't go on vacation when things are falling apart around you. Would they recess if the country were being bombed? I'm getting the impression that they would.

    Obama is right. Nothing is being "revealed" other than lies from the Republicans that some people are actually dumb enough to believe.

    July 23, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
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