September 9th, 2009
12:36 PM ET
13 years ago

Boustany rebuttal: start with what we 'agree upon'

(CNN) - Republican Rep. Charles Boustany said Wednesday that he plans to concentrate on aspects of health care reform that both parties "agree upon" in his rebuttal to President Obama's speech to a joint session of Congress.

"What we need to recognize is there are a lot of things that we agree upon," Boustany told CNN's Fredericka Whitfield. "Why don't we start there rather than starting with the very contentious approach that's been advocated, and in fact, an approach that is the only thing advocated in health care reform and that's a government plan."

The Louisiana lawmaker, a former cardiac surgeon, said specifically he thinks both parties agree on a need for overall insurance reform and lower costs. He called health care reform a "complex topic" and said "the most important thing to do is to get it right."

Boustany said he has tried to offer his ideas for health care reform to the White House and that he thinks Republicans need to be included in the overall discussions.

"Frankly, there really have not been any discussions between the White House and House Republicans and that's of some concern to me," Boustany said. "I'm quite frustrated to be frank with you. We do have a number of very substantive ideas that we could put forth."

Filed under: Congress
soundoff (110 Responses)
  1. R

    She is really old news.

    September 9, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  2. AntiRush

    The only 2 Republican ideas that I have seen are 1) there needs to be more competiton in the current system, which I agree with, and 2) we should give people tax credits to help pay for health care. Number 2 won't work at all because, it won't lower costs, it won't help people with pre-conditions get insurance, and it won't stop insurance companies from denying treatment or drug coverage to their customers. At the rate that insurance premiums are increase, which is 10% plus per year, the $5000 tax credit that is proposed would have to triple in 10 years just for the taxpayers to stay even.

    September 9, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  3. jay

    If Obama wanted a bi-partisan bill, he should have shown some real leadership, crafted the bill on his own, sent it down Pennsylvania Ave, and then told the House and Senate to work something out. Instead, he let the far left of his party craft the bill in the House, send it to the Senate, and wonders why nothing has been done. Obama, MIGHT be willing to work with the Republicans, but Pelosi, Reid and the rest of the left have shown a strong unwillingness to. Leadership requires that you actually LEAD, not organize a movement.

    September 9, 2009 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  4. Paul

    In 2004 Rep. Boustany tried to buy the title "Lord Boustany" for himself from a couple of British con artists. Whether this says more about his vanity or his gullibility you'll each have to decide for yourself, but I think it's great that the Republican party is doing so much to provide laughter to the American people in these difficult times.

    September 9, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  5. Lori in St Pete

    Was Boustany upset when Republicans regularly locked Democrats out of energy talks and allowed energy corporations such as Enron write policy back in 2001? i doubt it.

    September 9, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  6. Habte

    This is too funny.. repubs out of all people should be good at math but they are obviously not... The idea that we can do this little at a time is non-sense... You close one end of a hole, there are many other holes these insurance companies can run through and they will so this reform will end up being a waste because all these lawmakers would have spent all this time arguing about something that will have no effect. The only way to have a real reform is to give these insurance companies a real competetion... The public option does that and more. These companies will not be out of business because of a public option, they will just make less money then the billions they are racking up right now.

    September 9, 2009 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  7. Terry from Texas

    First of all, the debate is not between Democrats and Republicans. There are three parties in America. Conservatives (Republicans and Democrats), professional politicians who just want to keep a great job (Republicans and Democrats, and a small group of Liberals (all Democrats).

    Conservatives want global corporations to prosper and they don't give a crap about my health or yours. Professional pols are in favor of whatever is popular and against whatever is not popular. They blow with the breeze. Liberals want good health care for all Americans.

    There is no real common ground. There is no room for compromise. You are either for more prosperous insurance companies or you are for healthier Americans.

    September 9, 2009 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  8. sensible Cape Coral Fl

    All this crazy talk about government run health care plans are just that CRAZY!

    How come no one ever mentions Tri-Care -for-Life, or Champus, or Champva – all government run programs that work. We do hear about Medicare but never a complaint about it. HMMMMMM

    September 9, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  9. Barbara Independent in NY

    More Republican hot air. Shame on them for having a doctor deliver it.

    September 9, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  10. Lori in St Pete

    Someone should remind Mr. Boustany that nearly 30% of Louisiana residents are medicare or medicaid recipients, and that another 30% of Louisiana have NO insurance at all (having lived and worked there, I can tell you from experience that unless their employer is picking up the lion's share of the tab, they can't afford insurance), but they have jobs and their taxes are paying for the 30% on medicare/medicaid.

    September 9, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  11. A Democrat of 51 years who has finally got smart to their follishness.

    What is the matter with all you Obama supporters. Don't you see that the man's plan witll destroy medicare, medicaid and welfare. One can't get most physicians to accept medicare now. What are you going to do when his plan goes into effect. Nothing is free under his program you will pay through the nose not to insurance companies but to the government. GET SMART FOR A ONCE PEOPLE.

    September 9, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |

    Everytime i think of how foolish the replubicans sound countering the will of the people and knowing the backlash that is coming around the corner i can`t help but wander who is behind the wheel. We put Obama in the white house we wanted change and all wev`e gotten was road blocks place there by republicans in order to obstruct the foward motion of this administration. We will meet you guys at the gate and we will cancel your subscription.

    September 9, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  13. Bill NY

    So sad that this debate is being controlled by fringe lunatics financed by big bucks medicine and drug companies. Ahhhh, if only total ignorance were currency, there never be a shortage of money in this country.

    September 9, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  14. SHIRLEY "61"

    Did this guy live at "C" street? After learning he was trying to buy a title, he has got to be one of those idiots.

    September 9, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  15. Sharon

    There would be discussions with the White House staff and the President if the Repubs were not always out in front of a camera trying to tear the President down and behind the scenes edging on the racist rhetoric. The Repubs have no plan, no ideas and only want to destruct anything in the way of their terrorist agenda. Look at their leaders, Limbaugh, Hannity and Palin. Boy what a group!!

    Just because we are not out there screaming and making a fool out of ourselves, does not mean that we are not watching and gathering the storm against the Repubs in 2010 and 2012. Just Watch!!!

    September 9, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  16. AndrewCPA

    There is reporter who is also a doctor that was interviewed last night and he said he would order extra tests and visits to other doctors to cover himself in case of a law suit. Well if they are for reducing cost why not cap malpractice. This would reduce costs to everyone. Just putting govt in it will not solve it.

    I agree we need to help others, but it should not be a burden on the rest of us, and our debt.... that will grow $9T in 10 years. We can not afford that and our kids, grand kids....etc can not afford it too.

    September 9, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  17. Phat Elvis

    "starting with what we agree on" i great. i fully agree
    but if it is just another lead-in to hokey trickle down tax break mumbo jumbo of the last 2 decades, i say dont waste everyone's time.

    real change means REAL CHANGE: NO tax incentives to insurance corporations. NO penalties for pre-existing conditions. ACCESS to preventative care for all. and yes, A PUBLIC OPTION to cover the least able to pay for insurance.

    Stop this quasi-MCarthyist insanity against Democrats. DEMS ARE IN CHARGE AND WE ARE GOING TO MOVE THE COUNTRY FORWARD, WITH OR WITHOUT YOU.

    September 9, 2009 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  18. Jake

    Dear President Obama,

    Move forward without the Republicans. The GOP is dead weight. They're already too busy with trying to re-capture the White House in 2012 to bother with out of work and uninsured Americans. We DO NOT matter to them.

    They just don't get it! The Republican Party is dead!

    September 9, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  19. Chris from NC

    Come on, Congressman!! What's wrong with getting what we all want and then some?

    September 9, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  20. Eric in STL

    "Boustany said he has tried to offer his ideas for health care reform to the White House and that he thinks Republicans need to be included in the overall discussions."

    Umm, that is because Republicans have shown they really aren't interested in reaching a bipartisan deal that makes a difference. The most important goal to them (they've said it themselves) is to make sure Obama is defeated on this, which will help themselves in the next election. That's why we keep hearing, No, No No, we need to keep the status quo, less government control is all we need.

    September 9, 2009 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  21. john

    This is a good one what we agree on?? This coming from the jyndahl replacement! These people and the death panels (palin) also toute their 85% of people are happyy with their health insurance- Where in another solar system??? Oh wait they dont beleive in that either. We allready ration health carwe it is thru money ther more you have the best you get. All others go with out and simply die! As for the lobbying against it i heard on the news last night it was enough so far to caber almost 30 million americans! What a waste!!! Agree on this you have nothing to offer period as usual you and the big bucks people obamma needs to go it alone as he was elected to do and not worry about the cry babies of NO.

    September 9, 2009 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  22. deborah/kansas city

    I think everyone can see now, as evidenced by the despicable behavior by Republicans and the far right over the wonderful, motivational school speech; which by the way was not altered at all because of some paranoid delusions of the few; that the only thing the Republicans have to offer is more of the same. Protect big business, give tax breaks to the wealthy, and create lies and misinformation to destroy any progrss the country might make. Democrats need to go ahead and do what is right to protect the citizens of America, we need healthcare reform now and a Public Not For Profit System needs to be an option for us all. Medicare for all is the best way to make things fair, affordable, and sustainable for our economy.

    September 9, 2009 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  23. Reagan was wrong

    "I'm quite frustrated to be frank with you. We do have a number of very substantive ideas that we could put forth."

    Ok then, let us hear them. All we've heard so far are angry white people yelling at the top of their lungs while holding swastika signs.

    September 9, 2009 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  24. gl, From Pittsburgh

    You Repubicans had the month of August to come up with a plan instead you choise to use that month of August to scare people with all your lies and destory any crediabity that you really want to work with this president on Health Care Reform. Why would we believe anything from you Republicans now after what we seen you fools did in August. I will not be listen becasue it is going to be nothing but lies are please give us more time and so on. YOUR TIME IS UP!

    Why didn't you come foward and rebuttal the Dealth Panel Boustany?
    You have no crediablity becasue you didn't speak out against all the lies your party was spreading in the month of AUGUST.

    September 9, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  25. Allan

    Boustany was for death panels before he was against them.

    September 9, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
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