March 21st, 2010
08:33 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama on verge of health care reform

Washington (CNN) – If House Democrats pass the Senate bill Sunday night, as is expected, a senior administration official said “it won’t be signed today.”

Instead, President Obama will deliver remarks after the vote in the White House East Room.

The president spent the day working the phones in an effort to sway reluctant Democrats, and reach or exceed the 216 “magic number” needed to pass the Senate bill.

Only too eager to show the president fully engaged with his sleeves rolled up, the White House posted two photos of Obama. One photo showed him taking calls in the Oval Office, the other with his legislative team in chief of staff Rahm Emanuel’s office.

In just the last week, the president has logged more than 90 calls and meetings on health care, according to a senior aide.

A key breakthrough for the administration came Sunday afternoon, after a crucial agreement on language in a pending executive order. It won the support of holdout Rep. Bart Stupak and other anti-abortion Democrats who wanted assurances that federal funds would not be used to cover abortions.

In a statement, White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer said the order provided “additional safeguards.”

Mr. Obama plans to issue the executive order “after the passage” of the health care reform bill.

Republicans were quick to attack the latest effort to win support for the president’s top domestic initiative.

House Minority leader John Boehner warned the executive order “can be reversed or altered at the stroke of a pen,” and added that a “yes vote on the Democrats’ health care bill is a vote for taxpayer-funded abortions.”

Filed under: Health care • President Obama
soundoff (30 Responses)
  1. David

    You go Obama, you managed to do what hasn't been possible in over 70 years of trying. This is basically the plan that Obama campaigned on, the voting public new this when they voted out the republican yahoos. Republicans are now officially the party of fear and the party without ideas, This is a bipartisan as it reflects ideas of past republicans, it just ignores the new republicans that are more concerned with invoking fear and attempting to forward their own political careers then to help the people.

    March 21, 2010 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm |
  2. Eric in Atlanta

    Sad day for America and this will go down in history as the govt forcing its will against the will of its own people. The cost of this bill will be far higher than what the President and Pelosi are telling us. We will look back at this day in history and remember the lies that were told on the costs and savings of this plan. I have saved the articles from this past week and put them away in my safe. I feel certain that none of the savings promised will be realized. We will only know for sure about 10 years from now.

    March 21, 2010 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  3. Carl

    The Obama Admin..has made too many Constitutional Errors..I guarantee you..This is headed right to the United States Supreme Court...who..WILL..Overturn it

    March 21, 2010 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  4. gare

    Dems, Pres've lost an independent voter tonight. You've won one vote tonight, but You've lost my votes for the next several elections to come.

    March 21, 2010 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  5. Verge

    As the country is on the verge of being bankrupt, they add more debt, real smart thinking,

    March 21, 2010 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
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