Republicans declare Healthcare Summit victory

February 26, 2010

USA-HEALTHCARE/A day after President Barack Obama’s nationally televised healthcare summit, Republicans are out declaring victory.

Rep. Marsha Blackburn said the summit was good for the American public. Good, that is, for the public to hear the Republican argument and see Obama lose his usual cool, particularly during the highly publicized exchange with his former presidential election adversary, Sen. John McCain.

“It was good for the American people see him kind of become a bit agitated,” the Tennessee Republican told MSNBC.  “There were a couple of times that maybe he did get a little bit frustrated, and that’s good for the American people to see.”

The public also got to see how Democrats dominated two-thirds of the air time. And that bit of drama when Obama told McCain that the 2008 election was over?  ”Really inappropriate,” Blackburn said.

Not that McCain himself minded. He’d welcome another summit.

“It was good to have that conversation. I think it was good for the American people, people all over the world that watched,” the Arizona Republican told ABC’s Good Morning America. “I think it helps the American people make a judgment. I’d be glad to go over again.”

Pundits give Obama high marks for holding the rare bipartisan face-to-face encounter and say the president showed himself fully in command of the facts and details. But the summit showed no sign of budging either Republicans or Democrats toward a deal on healthcare reform.

McCain and Blackburn both warned Democrats not to do what they now seem likely to do — move forward with a reconciliation bill that could pass the House and Senate without Republican input. Because such a measure would reconcile two bills already passed by both chambers, it would require only a simple majority of 51 votes in the Senate instead of the 60 votes that new legislation would need to avoid a Republican filibuster.

“To go to the 51 votes instead of this traditional 60 in the United States Senate will have cataclysmic effects,” McCain said.

He didn’t specify. Blackburn held out hope that Republicans could stop any move toward reconciliation. But she said the issue would become a banner slogan for the 2010 congressional elections if Democrats succeed.

“If they move forward on reconciliation on this one, the American people are going to say, well, 2010 is all about repeal the bill. We’re still in the mode of kill the bill and I think that we will,” she said.

For more Reuters political coverage, click here

Photo credit: Reuters/Jason Reed (Obama at healthcare summit)

18 comments

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Having just watched bits and pieces of the summit, I can only say that I’m glad I didn’t watch it all. The whole tone and bottom-line was still “I won” and “I’m President” so I get to run my mouth more than anyone and too bad if you don’t like it. That is hardly a bi-partisan attitude. Obviously, the Dems don’t “get it” that them having “to ram the bill through” by reconciliation proves that they know that the American people are against it but brush that aside with callousness. I’m more curious about what Obama was hinting at with his “there’s an election” coming up statement that sounded like a not-so-veiled threat. Perhaps he knows that if this bill is rammed through the Dems will lose seats unmercifully and he will be a lame duck President within his first term but, since he doesn’t care to run a second term if that is what happens, it doesn’t really matter to him. It looks to me like Obama was s-elected for one reason only and that is to take over as much of American industry and the health care system he can before he loses his momentum and that, to bring us in line with Canada and Mexico. We’ll see.

Posted by Ms_Lonni | Report as abusive

This isn’t about Winning and Losing…it’s about Democracy. Republicans, Tea Baggers, and everyone else waiting for the Apocalypse…move to the desert already and leave the sane people alone to fix your mess.

Posted by Streetfighter | Report as abusive

…”to bring us in line with Canada and Mexico.” … please do!!! both countries have excellent healthcare systems. both canadian and mexican health care industries are better than america. <<info not coming from me…comes from the WHO (world health organization). republicans are just complaining about the bill because its a democratic bill. to vote against something just because your party didnt create it is some school-age-playground nonsense. these people need to grow up.

Posted by fredderf81 | Report as abusive

fredderf81 You must stop drinking the kool-aid. If you think that Mexico’s health system is better that ours,then I have bridge to sell you! This is not the time to increase our nation debt by diving into a unsure health care gamble. The democrats are the one’s who are to hardheaded to give up on a failed policy. The American people in pole after pole are fed up with the democrat health care plan.

Posted by t34man | Report as abusive

Yesterday’s summit wasn’t about health care and the American people. It was all about the Democrat party and the Republican party. What happened to the concept of representing ALL the people, not just those of your own party. I’m sick of them fighting with one another, in the name of their party, without regard to ALL AMERICANS, regardless of party affiliation.

Does a Democrat Senator only represent the Democrats in his district? Same for a Republican. Too bad, because here in Illinois we have two Dems, no representation for republicans or conservatives. Our two party system is preventing meaningful legislation.

When you have a ballot in your hand next time, please never, ever vote for an incumbent. It’s the only way you can impose term limits on these career politicians.

Posted by cellphone | Report as abusive

“To go to the 51 votes instead of this traditional 60 in the United States Senate will have cataclysmic effects,” McCain said.

Since when has the filibuster been “traditional”, Senator McCain? Since when has it been “traditional” to require a cloture vote on every piece of legislation, Senator McCain? Freakin’ Republicants sure do like to rewrite history to suit their political ends, don’t they?

Posted by Yellow105 | Report as abusive

Not only are they rewriting history, they are rewriting the Constitution. They can’t stop themselves, so we have to stop them the next time they run for office. Don’t vote for them.

Posted by cellphone | Report as abusive

to freddif81 As a Canadian I had to laugh when you suggested that the canadian system is superior to the American system. Let me remove the smoke and mirrors:
1. Doctors in Canada will readily agree that the number of tests and treatments available under the American system are far greater;
2. 85% of the world’s new drugs are invented in the USA because that’s the only place where you can get a return on your investment. The rest of the world simply “mooch” of America in this regard.
3. If American’s want cheaper health care … then socialized medicine is not your option. In Canada it is the Provinces single biggest budget item. British Columbia [by no means a poor province] expends 50% of their budget on health care
4. If you don’t want to wait 2 years for a hip replacement don’t adopt the Canadian system.
5. Why did the Premier of Newfoundland go to the US for heart surgery if our system is so fantastic.
6. Since when did transforming an industry into a monopoly make it cheaper or better?

Finally… how can Canadians get away with socialized medicine? It’s simple … the U.S.A. pays for our Defense because we live on their backdoor. (2) We let the U.S.A. do all the R & D for healthcare [particularily medicines] and then in about 10 years we figure out how we can afford to include those medicines and procedures in our health care system. Conclusion: Comparing the American situation with Canada is at best misleading and at worst pure propaganda.

Posted by cmarider | Report as abusive

Yellow and cellphone.

How is the republican party rewriting the constitution?

Sounds more like emotional diatribes than commentary based on fact.

Posted by TyC | Report as abusive

TyC- You are the last person who should be accusing others of emotional diatribes, whiny little boy.

Posted by Yellow105 | Report as abusive

Well, I didn’t think anyone could answer how the republicans are rewriting the constitution…

Posted by TyC | Report as abusive

The Republicans are not rewriting the constitution so much as they are simply ignoring it, or using convoluted legal arguments to get around it. Illegal searches, illegal surveillance, illegal wars, torture, separation of church and state, separation of powers, and Bush’s use of signing statements to ignore whatever laws he wasn’t willing to obey. In the past, the constitution was a framework for what America stood for. The republicans see it is an obstacle to their political goals and political power.

Posted by Yellow105 | Report as abusive

So, you admit it was an emotional diatribe against republicans and they are not rewriting the constitution.

President Obama just signed and extended The Patriot Act. Interesting, huh?

Do you mind expanding on your claims the republicans are “ignoring and using convoluted legal arguments” to get around the constitution? It would be nice for everyone to hear what you have say.

Posted by TyC | Report as abusive

Christ, TyC, does everything have to be win or lose with you? You sound like that annoying talk radio host John Siegler.
I’m not about to spend the effort educating someone as thick-headed as you about something conservatives and liberals know to be fact. All you will do next is say, “Well, that’s just your opinion, and it’s wrong.”

Posted by Yellow105 | Report as abusive

Well, you prove one thing. I was just asking you to explain your accusations. I didn’t even give my opinion, so there was nothing I was trying to win or lose.

As for your refusal to explain your “accusations”, that’s what I expected. You are just emitting emotional diatribes which are not based on fact whatsoever.

You gave a textbook response a typical progressive will give. If you can’t explain your actions, you ridicule and call names.

Have a nice day.

Posted by TyC | Report as abusive

TyC- You also prove one thing. That you are more interested in pissing people off than having a “debate”.

Read my post above again. Are you saying that Bush never made a record number of signing statements, or that illegal surveillance of American citizens never took place? Are you saying that the war of aggression on Iraq never took place? Are you saying that the Bush administration’s Faith Based Initiative never violated the Constitution? No one needs to explain these things to you. You know damn well these things happened. You just pretend you didn’t know, like a Good German.

I listen to a lot of AM radio to get a feel for what the right wing noise machine is cranking out, and how they deal with people foolish enough to call in and “debate” people like Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham on the air. The tactics are always the same. Ignore and dismiss any points they make, accuse them of being emotional and irrational, bury them in talking points, and always, always get the last word.

I can tell you listen to the same programs because you “debate” in exactly the same way. You should get a show, because you’re good at it. I hear it pays millions.

Posted by Yellow105 | Report as abusive

Yellow.

The only reason you are pissed off is because you have no answer to your accusations.

Remember, President Obama just signed to extend The Patriot Act.

My point is to point out the emotional statements you emit on a continual basis. All I asked for is an explanation and not a laundry list of “crimes” you believe he made.

Since you are pissed off, I am left to conclude you are just spouting off hate for anything republican…as is usually the case.

You have the last word, because you appear to have no evidence to back up your diatribes. Frankly, I don’t have time for your emotionally unstable view of the world.

Posted by TyC | Report as abusive

All I said was that you were a whiny little boy. You have proven the point for me with your whiny post.

Posted by Yellow105 | Report as abusive

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