President, Republicans Far Apart on Health Care

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

Some congressional Republicans say President Barack Obama squandered a chance to build bipartisan support in his health-care address to Congress.

Cong. Gregg Harper of Mississippi's third district called on President Obama to "go back to the drawing board".

“Republicans continue to seek constructive solutions to making quality health care coverage available, affordable and accessible for every American, regardless of pre-existing health conditions," said Harper in a written statement. "But the truth is, if the Democrats wanted a bipartisan bill, they would produce a bipartisan bill.

Harper said the Democratic leadership insists that a public option must be in the bill, in order for it to pass the House of Representatives. He says a "government-run public insurance option is unsustainable, places unnecessary burdens on our small businesses and would saddle Mississippi with unfunded mandates in the form of substantially higher Medicaid costs."

Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker says he had been hoping to hear Obama "flesh out a middle ground, but instead we heard platitudes and campaign rhetoric."

They say the problem is his continuing support for a government-run plan for the uninsured.

In his speech to Congress, President Obama said an option to private insurance should be part of any health care overhaul. He says it would keep insurance companies honest and the government-run option would be part of an insurance exchange for last-resort coverage.

Obama said the Congressional Budget Office estimates that less than 5 percent of Americans would sign up for the option. He said the public option would not be subsidized by taxpayers, but would be self-sufficient and rely on the premiums it collects.

He said the public option is a way to ensure affordable health care through competition, but he's open to other ideas.

In his GOP response to the Obama speech, Republican congressman Charles Boustany said that "replacing your family's current health care" with a government-run program is "not the answer."


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Debra Rushing Location: Little Rock, MS on Sep 21, 2009 at 02:43 PM
    By deciding what to print and what to omit or delete, you are not giving everyone a chance to have their opinion heard.
  • by Debra Rushing Location: Little Rock, MS on Sep 21, 2009 at 02:38 PM
    I am extremely worried about this healthcare bill. I am on social security disability . With no cost of living increase and insurance rising, that starts taking away from my check, which is $599.00 a month. I am in the hospital every 7 to 10 days and meds are high. With all the cuts here and there and decreasing check, What are people like me suppose to do? Two parties one health care bill- one party not agreeing & one who doesn't care if they are by themselves passing it, that is not representing the people, it is hurting peoples lives. States are almost maxed out on helping people, federal government can't help states because its financially strapped, cuts seem only to hurt more than help, yet polticians increase what helps them and blames it on something or someone else. People who sit in high places with money do not have a clue how to help hardworking people. When this bills passes for everyone and everyone feels the same pressure, next voting by people will be different.
  • by Realitycheck Location: Meridian on Sep 12, 2009 at 12:36 PM
    Anthony, maybe it it YOU who is not keep up with current events. There are plenty of people who have their hands out every month waiting for all kinds of government assistance. People who are fully capable of working but CHOOSE not to. The govt pays these little girls to breed without consequence on the contrary, the govt PAYS THEM to do it. Now Obama wants to open all the doors so that those of us who work our behinds off to support these little girls and their children can also support illegal aliens. We are fed up! Enough is enough!
  • by CARL Location: PHILLY on Sep 11, 2009 at 06:13 AM
    Anothony, I bleave you think in the real world,people don't have ten kids they can't feed,and they think i who cared for my on should be happy to spend my money to take care of theres. I came from a family of eight kids,and i know what it's like to make do with what you have.Thats why i learned to be responseable. for my self and not expect outhers to do it for me.to citizen my brothers or in Christ, not every one in this world are my brothers. we are in the world but not of it. thare or socialist countrys in this world if you like this have at it,I'am sure they would let you in.
  • by Maurice on Sep 11, 2009 at 04:07 AM
    If you really want to be your brothers keeper, there are far better avenues than the federal government. You could move to the least expensive area of town, buy a cheap dependable car, eat hamburger helper everyday, and give the money you have left over every week to the charity of your choise or, the government will accept your check. It just depends on how serious you really are about keeping your brother.
  • by Maurice on Sep 11, 2009 at 03:46 AM
    If we could beleive what the what the government tells us, people would support a plan, but they lie. They lie, load the bill up with special programs, and rape the taxpayer for their own agenda. We heard no taxes for anyone making under $250,000, thats already been a lie. Anyone who smokes is paying at least $1.00 per pack more in taxes, with more to come for other consumable items. This will affect millions under the $250,000 income bracket. I don't oppose helping out those in need, but the key words here is, in need, not those in want, or those who are to sorry to help themselves. I can't afford to help the guy on welfare, sitting on his porch, drinking alcohol, or doing drugs with the money he's already getting from working taxpayers. I can't afford anymore people walking around streets doing nothing, while I sweat out in the heat or freeze in the cold, needing help but cannot get anyone to stay around over a couple of days (works to hard ) My pocket can't afford big government
  • by Citizen Location: Meridian on Sep 10, 2009 at 07:02 PM
    The Bible tells us that we are our brother's keeper. I don't see anything socialist about making sure that those who are less fortunate are medically cared for. We are to bear one another's burdens. Until we abide by the Word of God, this country will continue to bicker and complain about trivial matters.
  • by anthony Location: meridian,ms. on Sep 10, 2009 at 05:07 PM
    $comment.getname You are out of touch with the real world. Their are plenty people who are working not just one job ,but two are more. They just don't make enough money. Grocery high, clothes for more than one child high, gas high, theres lot of things i can name and yes you can budget but when that vehicle needs to go into the shop and when you get sick and have to be stuck in the E.R. . This is what you call the unexpected being on a fix budget. And for the records there are blacks,whites,hispanicsand others recieving federal benefits. I'm black and i work for my money and i don't mind paying taxes for some people in need just not the ones who don't work. Got ya!
  • by anthony Location: PHILLY on Sep 10, 2009 at 12:21 PM
    Obama and the American people are far apart on a lot of things. Lord help us to make it through this mans term. please help him to see the truth. that JESUS is lord,and in controle. can a man be christ like,and take from the working and give to people that can but wont work?????
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