February 25th, 2010
05:40 PM ET
10 years ago

Pawlenty: Health care summit was 'window-dressing'

Possible 2012 presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty said Thursday's summit was a public relations stunt.

Possible 2012 presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty said Thursday's summit was a public relations stunt.

Washington (CNN) - Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty sent a letter to President Obama last week urging him to invite governors to the White House health care summit because state executives have "hands-on experience reforming health care in our states."

That request was declined.

Not surprisingly, Pawlenty, a potential Obama rival in 2012, said Thursday's high-profile meeting failed to deliver.

"It's unfortunate that President Obama rejected my request to include governors from both parties in today's discussion," Pawlenty said in a statement released by his office. "Governors have hands-on experience reforming health care in our states and would've brought concrete ideas to the table. For example, in Minnesota we've implemented reforms such as paying providers based on quality, rather than number of procedures, and incentivizing state employees to use higher-quality, lower-cost clinics.

"Instead it appears today's summit was mostly window dressing before Democrats use reconciliation to force their overreaching, ill-advised plan through Congress, despite the strong opposition of most Americans," he concluded.

Filed under: Health care • President Obama • Tim Pawlenty
soundoff (99 Responses)
  1. Sandra, Atlanta

    CNN, you show everything Pawlenty and Palin breath or speak. Are you campaigning for them?

    February 25, 2010 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  2. hongli

    Tim Pawlenty can talk all the crap he wants but the Republicans were not in the meeting with their hearts and minds instead they were texting to CNN Dana Bash what they wanted to get out to the public as that network was carrying a live feed and this was shameful and downright nasty for them to do. The Republicans have little or no RESPECT for this President period . Dana Bash was very proud to accomodate them which leave me to wonder who is paying this idiot.

    February 25, 2010 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  3. from Minnesota with no insurance

    And by overhauling, he clearly means more rhetorical garbage from the office that just cut health care to the very neediest in his home state. Unbelievable. Thanks for nothing Tim. Now go away!

    February 25, 2010 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  4. Cynthia - Arkansas

    All the Republicans wanted to do was come and show out. They have no desire to help the people of America. They are bought and paid for by the insurance industy and big corporations. Get real!

    I am so proud that we have a President and Democrats that actually care about the rest of the people. Not just the rich.

    The Democrats were elected in large numbers to get something done. All the Republicans have done is obstruct with every parlimentary procedure that they can dream up. The Republicans can not accept the fact that they are not in power. As Congressman Weiner said yesterday, the Republicans just need to deal with it!

    February 25, 2010 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  5. Bruce

    Yeah, like Pawlenty is gonna solve this thing. Ha! He'd just be one more loudmouth in the room trying to promote himself.

    February 25, 2010 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  6. GOP

    Just another dog & pony show by the dumocraps.Use the reconciliation dems and perish.Dare you to do it,please do it and good riddance.

    February 25, 2010 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  7. Most Republicans - Wrong about everything, Wrong for America (and GW Bush was the worst President ever)

    Another bag of wind. First of all, this was a meeting for people who actually had the ability to create and vote for the legislation. Secondly, a check of health insurance premiums for 2009 shows that Minnesota was the 16th most expensive for individual policies, and the 8th most expensive for family policies. 8th and 16th most expensive out of 50 states is not exactly a ringing endorsement for cutting health care premiums.

    February 25, 2010 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  8. Bobbie Fasano

    I watched the health care debate with great interest. My husband and I are both over 60-years of age and health care is an important issue not only for us but for every American. I found it most irritating that the Republicans complained about using Reconciliation as a method to pass health care. Point in fact is this process has been used 22 times to pass legislation – 16 of those times have been used by the Republican Party to pass legislation, most of which were tax breaks for big business. Now that the Democrats may use this allowable procedure they are all up in arms about the process. Give me a break!

    February 25, 2010 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  9. Micah

    Gee Tim, the former governors in the room did just fine shooting down every plan the President mentioned. And didn't the President meet with Governors this week? What, that meeting wasn't televised, so you didn't get your face all over? Republicans showed again today that they will not play ball. No matter what the President says or does, they will say no. No matter how this bill gets watered down to appease them, they will vote no.So, tough. We are the majority, this is the right thing too do for the country, and Democrats will finally get it done. So you guys can take your props and your complaints and your threats, and go play ball with yourselves. When it cost a million dollars a year that we don't have to keep a soldier in the field, and you OK every blessed bill regarding war spending, and NEVER ask "Where is money coming from?" you have no right to withhold dollars to help the American people on American soil! None. Enough...we are done trying to get your help, your opinions, and your votes. Done.

    February 25, 2010 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  10. mims

    I am so sick and tired of all the whining... i mean all we hear are boo hoo the president's being mean to me, he doesn't listen to us, we don't get as much time to state our complaints as the democrats do.... I f you really want to be heard then grow a pair and make them listen to you...

    February 25, 2010 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  11. Yes, it was!

    It was nothing more than window dressing for Obama.

    I deeply resent the way he took up so much time for himself - while this was supposed to be a discussion between members of Congress - to interject his personal bias time and again.

    And then he had the audacity to "remind" others to watch their time. He hogged most of it for himself!

    What really made me laugh is how Obama chided McCain that "the election is over." NO kidding, Obama - so what have YOU been doing this past year except for campaigning?

    February 25, 2010 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  12. Michael from Ventura

    Quit politicing and DO something tangible. You republiCANTS are all alike- Memo: You LOST the elction- you were put OUT of office! There is a reason for this! Your actions are speaking louding than any political rhetoric you spew! GO AWAY!

    February 25, 2010 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  13. They call me "tater salad"

    When Republicans keep saying " most Americans" or "The American people"oppose Healthcare reform I can't help but wonder who their refering to........That's certainly not how I feel nor does it seem to be the view of most people I know........I'm a self employed small business owner who is presently paying $1,500.00 a MONTH for health insurance (Blue Cross/ Wellpoint) for myself and my wife............THAT'S MORE THAN MY MORTGAGE and now they want to increase my premiums for no other reason other than JUST BECAUSE THEY CAN / FEEL LIKE IT!........It's not about Healthcare reform........It's about Health Insurance reform........So in short, I'M ALL FOR A PUBLIC OPTION!.......... Screw these crooks!!!!!!!!

    February 25, 2010 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  14. linda

    Really, who cares what Pawlenty says - he is an absentee governor for the State of Minnesota, and one of the worst governors in the
    history of the state.

    Put this guy in the loser column!

    February 25, 2010 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  15. Gerry NH

    It wasn't window dressing it is more slop in the pig pen.

    February 25, 2010 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  16. No_Tpaw

    TPaw – shut up because you're irrelevant!

    February 25, 2010 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  17. T-Peeuuw

    Smellsplenty is a LOSER

    February 25, 2010 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  18. GI Joe

    Want some cheese with that whine T-Paw? Make the next bridge collapse look better.

    February 25, 2010 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  19. Pam

    It is so obvious Pawlenty is trying to get his name/comments in the news. He is way behind as a contender for the Rebulican nominee and he trying to throw in his pathetic 2 cents. Governors do make executive decisons; however they are not lawmakers for our country. The more people who are included in the summit the more opinions you have; resulting in solving nothing but a photo opt to push their agenda.

    February 25, 2010 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  20. Limbaugh is a liberal

    With all due respect to Pawn-lenty: governors don't make federal law. Congress does! Learn your government 101!

    February 25, 2010 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  21. beth

    Hey Timmy, it's hard to deliver when your 'party of no' showed up with their fingers in their ears.

    February 25, 2010 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  22. Ancient Texan

    Nothing but a dog and pony show. A chance for the Left to allow a few minutes for the GOP to present their case with the Dems turned a deaf ear to. Then use twice as much time to try to sell the public, for the forty second time, on government takeover of healthcare. Nobody was fooled, same old, same old.

    February 25, 2010 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  23. beth

    Kind of the Window Dressing that the GOP used 16 out of the 22 total times that reconciliation has bben used....and YES, this is FACT....check it out.

    February 25, 2010 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  24. David

    Actually the voters decided on this change when the repubs lost so badly in the last election. Just because you are afraid of losing the insurance lobbyists contributions to your candidates in the next election cycle doesn't mean that you can play games with poll #'s and pretend that public opinion has shifted, any shift that has occurred is due to your party and lobbyists missrepresenting the plan. When polled on the specific aspects of the plan the majority of Americans like this very centrist approach.

    February 25, 2010 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  25. Total BS

    There you go already Pawlenty,so much for working together you self-centered jerk !

    February 25, 2010 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
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