September 2nd, 2009
11:50 AM ET
13 years ago

Obama considering major health care speech

[cnn-photo-caption image=
caption="President Barack Obama is considering giving a major speech detailing specifics on a health-care reform bill."]

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama is considering giving a major speech detailing specifics on what he would like to see included in a health-care reform bill, a senior White House aide said Wednesday.

Senior advisor David Axelrod told CNN, the president is looking at the possibility of a speech as "one of his options" in pushing forward his health care agenda after he returns from vacation at Camp David next week.

Obama has outlined broad principles for what he would like in health-care reform, but he has left most details to leaders in Congress. Now, White House aides say, the dynamic has changed.

"We're entering a new season," Axelrod said. "It's time to synthesize and harmonize these strands and get this done."

Another administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity when discussing strategy, said the new phase was "driven in part by the actions of some in the GOP, including Senators Grassley and Enzi."

The official added, the White House believes those actions indicate that the two key Republicans - Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Mike Enzi of Wyoming, who are part of a bipartisan group negotiating a health care bill, "are essentially walking away from the table."

The official also said that "now is the time to begin to pull together the various strands and solutions from the four bills that have been marked up and other proposals... basically all the cards are on the table."

It's unclear still what form the speech by the president would take. If he decides to give an address, he could do it from the Oval Office or before a joint session of Congress. But the administration official said no decisions have been made.

"The president is considering all of his options on how to advance the debate and get reform passed. This includes possibly laying out a more specific vision."

Filed under: David Axelrod • Health care
soundoff (266 Responses)
  1. Demtrius

    Oh yeah, one more thing...
    ...even if you have to break your promise and raise taxes on the middle and low class to pass health care reform, do it. I rather have to pay taxes on a solid health care system and everyone has health care than leave it like it is now. We need you to do this thing right, Sir.

    September 2, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  2. aware

    Try silence Obama! The majority of Americans don't believe a word you say. Your actions give the lie to your obfuscating words! 🙁

    September 2, 2009 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  3. Ivan

    Mr. Obama wants to help those who are not born with the killer instinct to get rich at any cost. Most repugnicans, who are so blinded by their greed, would deny that there's a lower middle class of citizens in every country who have the same rights as the wealthy to kivedecent lives, without anxiety and stress.
    You deserve better, Mr. Obama, and I don't envy you your role as leader of a country where the militant, negative and selfish are continuing to make life miserable for ordinary Americans with unjust wars and criminal profiteering.
    Hope evolution makes these vermin extinct soon, but the mills of God grind exceedlngly slow, but extremely fine.

    September 2, 2009 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  4. Moderate Vet

    It seems that both sides of this argument are misleading the general public. Here are some basic things to consider. Insurance is not a right. It is a privilege. The very definition of insurance is the transfer of risk to someone else. We are at risk of illness so we, through payment of a fee, transfer the risk of being ill to a business who willing to share that risk for said fee. I have no problem helping those who through no fault of their own are in need. I do have a problem doing anything for those who continue to make bad decisions and expect others to save them. It creates a learned helplessness. Big government is inefficient at best. As an example, one way that Mr. Obama plans to pay for the proposed reform is by cutting waste in the medicare program. If we know there is so much waste then why haven’t we cut it already? Because the bigger the government the more inefficient it becomes.

    September 2, 2009 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  5. Jones in CO


    Personal Responsibility.

    Accountability for your actions.

    True Americans do not ask for a hand-out.

    True Americans will always provide a hand-up to those in need.

    We are the greatest civilization on the planet.

    Everyone who is not an American wishes they were.

    Es Verdad.

    September 2, 2009 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  6. JF

    What is all this fuss?????? Do you nay-sayers even know what you are saying "nay" about???! Have you read any of the FACTS regarding this reform? Do you know HOW to read ??? And as far as "Counting
    the Days" is concerned much further out-of-touch can you possibly be? The last time this Nation prospered was guessed it...when a DEMOCRAT was in the White House! What a surprise ...

    September 2, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  7. Gary

    You brainwashed Fox News channel people are unbelievable. Do you really believe everything Hannity, O'Reilly, and Rush say to you? A plan to force the kids of American to "appreciate" him? Really? Are you kidding? Fascist? Socialist? Do you really know what those regimes are like?

    September 2, 2009 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  8. Jones in CO

    Who wants health care reform? Change the way we see our doctor? Change the way we are treated in a hospital? Change the way we do research and lead the world in disease prevention? Change the way we bring new technology for the benefit of mankind?

    The answer – noone. Not even those without health insurance.

    We want health care FINANCING reform. Get the governmet to pay their fair share. Abolish the Medicare Reimbursement Rate times the RVU (look it up) system. Cost transparency, TRUE Cost Transparency. Tort Reform. National Wellness Program.

    We can do it.

    September 2, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  9. franco

    Hey, know how to pay for health care? Have IRS collect back taxes from all those tax cheats in Congress. Let's start with Charlie Rangel!!, For the life of me I cannot understand why this scumbag tax cheat is not serving time in the big house and why is he still writing the US tax code. Chase him out of the House, democrats.

    September 2, 2009 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  10. Nat, NYC

    Almost all Medicade, Welfare and rent subsidized housing recipients in city of New York are Democrats and most of them African Americans and Hispanics. The programs our President trying to achieve are beneficial only to these kind of voters. They loooove Obama and can listen to his lectures all day long, because they don't work. If the Republicans is party of “No”, then Democrats is party of “Give me more”.

    September 2, 2009 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  11. libs r fools

    obama and his team have already blown it, he cannot continue to try to fool the citizens, whatever he says is not going to work.

    September 2, 2009 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  12. REF

    aftrer running for 2 years as a canidate and now as a prez for 8 months or so constantly talking about health care isnt it kinda of odd he has to start a new campaign to re-invent this topic. he campaigned on reforming america well after 8 months of his policies the american people now are wise to him. so renaming it, redefining it or whatever, a socialist is and will always be socialist..

    September 2, 2009 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  13. Paul

    It appears that our health care system has to get still worse before enough people want to support a change. Those of us with medical coverage are ALREADY paying for those who don't. Why not work toward a system that lowers costs and emphasizes prevention? When will our representatives have the backbone to do what is right for all Americans, rather than those that are the loudest, with the most money?

    September 2, 2009 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  14. Eleanor

    These Democrats in Congress had better hurry up and find their spines! It's time to get up off their cowardly knees and do what they were elected to do! Otherwise, they'll all be looking for new jobs in 2010 and 2012.

    A lifetime-long proud, liberal, progressive, Democrat.

    PS If you guys on the Hill think we're kidding...just try us!

    September 2, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  15. Uncle Ellsworthy

    Let him talk!

    Every time he says something, more folks are against this than before. The man has overexposed himself so much that most of what he says is no longer being believed by most people. It has been a major mistake for him to be on TV daily, the campaign is over, it's time to perform.

    September 2, 2009 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  16. Marcus Allen

    WHY do they want control of the health care system when they can't even say what needs fixing? It's a power grab, plain and simple.

    September 2, 2009 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
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