The Trail: A Daily Diary of Campaign 2008


Health Care

Obama touts endorsements by seniors, doctors groups

By Scott Wilson
President Obama said Thursday he is "extraordinarily pleased and grateful" for the AARP and American Medical Association endorsements of the health care reform legislation moving through the House of Representatives.

"We are closer to passing this reform than ever before," Obama said. "And now that the doctors and medical professionals of America are standing with us; now that the organizations charged with looking out for the interests of seniors are standing with us, we are even closer."

Obama made his remarks during a surprise appearance in the White House briefing room, and his decision to do so appeared designed to generate momentum for the bill heading into a decisive weekend.

Obama is scheduled to travel to the Hill Friday to speak with House Democrats about the importance of passing the legislation. A House vote is scheduled for Saturday, the first of several key Congressional floor votes that will determine whether he secures his signature domestic policy initiative by his end-of-the-year deadline.

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Thursday that the goal of Obama's Hill visit is "trying to get the bill out of the House."

Obama declined to endorse the House version during his appearance in the briefing room, but Gibbs did not rule out his doing so Friday in meetings on the Hill.

"I think it's important for members to hear the importance of continuing to move this process along, continuing to make progress on reforms that are real and tangible for the American people," Gibbs said.

As Obama appeared at the White House, demonstrators rallied on Capitol Hill against the health care reform legislation. Asked for his comment on the protests, Gibbs said "there's a rally going on without a solution on their side."

Gibbs called the Republican health care proposal "a series of old ideas that wouldn't cut the amount of money government spends on health care nearly to the degree that other bills would."

"The piece of legislation they've come up with, I think, is disappointing as a process in this debate and disappointing for millions of Americans that wanted help in finding affordable health care," he said.

Referring to AARP, the nation's leading senior-citizens lobby, Obama told reporters "this is no small endorsement."

"They're endorsing this bill because they know it will strengthen Medicare, not jeopardize it. They know it will protect the benefits our seniors receive, not cut them," he said. "So I want everybody to remember that the next time you hear the same tired arguments to the contrary from the insurance companies and their lobbyists. And remember this endorsement the next time you see a bunch of misleading ads on television."

Obama described the AMA as "men and women who know our health care system best and have been watching this debate closely."

"They would not be supporting it if they really believed that it would lead to government bureaucrats making decisions that are best left to doctors," he said. "They would not be with us if they believed that reform would in any way damage the critical and sacred doctor-patient relationship."

Posted at 3:17 PM ET on Nov 5, 2009  | Category:  Health Care
Share This: Technorati talk bubble Technorati | Tag in | Digg This
Previous: Obama addresses Native American leaders | Next: Obama Delays Trip to Hill, Will Pay Visit Friday to Walter Reed

Add 44 to Your Site
Be the first to know when there's a new installment of The Trail. This widget is easy to add to your Web site, and it will update every time there's a new entry on The Trail.
Get This Widget >>


Please email us to report offensive comments.

Exercise your political voice!

This petition respectfully requests that President Obama keep true to his word and veto HR 3962 should it cross his desk. The president stated that he "will not sign a bill that raises the deficit". HR 3962 does, in fact, raise the deficit2. Signing this petition indicates strong opposition to HR 3962. Demand that the president keep his word.

No, the bill is not ready for the president just yet but it could be soon. Let the president know that the American public does not support any bill which raises the deficit.

Sign here:

Help get 5,000,000 signatures! Pass it on.

Posted by: PE_Zelda | November 11, 2009 9:26 PM

The insurance industry and republicans fought to keep medicare from coming into existence. Now they use it as a tool to prevent passage of health care reform. Their hypocrisy smells worse than their disregard for American citizen's basic right to life. We all have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness in this country. When you deny health care you deny the right to life. Without that fundamental right there can be no liberty or happiness.

Posted by: seemstome | November 9, 2009 5:34 AM

The infighting in the democratic party is the result of insurance corporation bribery. Leading the greedy pack is the senator from Aetna, J.Lieberman, who is the personification of evil treachery. This abomination from the state of Connecticut schemes to continue the death grip that insurers have on Americans. I can only imagine the shame that citizens from that state must feel as Lieberman works to undo everything the democratic party stands for in Connecticut. The welfare of American citizens is too important for a handful of corrupt senators to stand in the way.

Posted by: seemstome | November 9, 2009 5:15 AM


The Stupak debate is not moral, it's entirely political.

The moral choice would be to pass a health care bill that promises care for all women and their children.

If these GOP and Blue dog men really valued life, they'd support American women and their babies.

Posted by: JohnQuimby | November 7, 2009 2:58 PM

Have read some interesting updates and news about health care bill at this great site, very informative! >>

Posted by: fozzy13 | November 7, 2009 1:39 AM

I wonder what will happen if a young women or couple is scared and concerned about the timing of their pregnancy and needs a little helping hand or support. Will it be better for the woman to go by a pregnancy SUPPORT center that will do whatever they can to help her through this TEMPORARY tough time in her life or will it be better for a Government funded Doctor and/or abortion clinic to tell her they can give her a Quick Fix and terminate the pregnancy for her, with Government Money FOR FREE.

I strongly encourage you to only accept the Stupak Amendment to keep abortion out of Health Care. The Ellsworth Amendment specifically ALLOWS federal funding of abortion in the public plan and allows government subsidies to go to private plans that
include abortion coverage.

Posted by: colleen10001 | November 6, 2009 10:57 PM

I also emailed AARP - twice - to protest their proposed endorsement of the health care bills.

Today I sent them a protest email and called my representative's office to let them know that I did not agree with AARP's endorsement and I was not in favor of the bills making their way through the Congress. Not sure what else I can do for now.

Posted by: annetta3 | November 6, 2009 6:36 PM

Only 16% of doctors belong to the AMA. The 84% that don't belong mostly don't agree. The AMA has historically been impotent in representing doctors interests and that is why so few belong to it. When I started practice 25yrs ago it was taboo for the AMA and other medical societies to discuss the business of health care.

Posted by: smoloney | November 6, 2009 2:16 PM

This bill is not about cost reform and everything about the government taking over one sixth of our economy. This is a horrific expensive invasive bureaucratic entitlement that stomps on our Constitution and personal liberty. They raise our premiums and raise taxes and claim this is cost reform. Are they stupid? This will lead to rationing and mediocre care. The greedy deaf politicians are the ones who already stole the money millions of seniors who paid for their care will now steal the services. Amazing. And they will make us pay for abortions with taxpayer money. They want us to unwilling pay for child murder? How dare them. And they will eliminate private health care insurance for us in 2013 while they choose to keep their own private care for themselves. These greedy deaf politicians are going home in 2010. And we will get the rest the next round. Our family has never seen anything this evil and deceptive.

Posted by: greatgran1 | November 6, 2009 12:37 PM

Every year around 200,000 new people retire and apply for medicare and they are going to take money away from this program to pay for the reform bill. I say what person in there right mind would think this is going to help seniors much less an organization that is supposed to look up for seniors? If they lower medicare payments to doctors, they will stop seeing seniors who reliy on medicare. This bill the democrats what to push past us is so full of unrelated junk that has nothing to do with providing everyone with coverage. There is on section on vending machines labeling and another on biofuels?! What does that have to do with making sure everyone has affordable healthcare coverage? I tell you! Nothing! It has to do with adding things in to get the votes they need to pass it just for the sake of passing it. It has nothing to do with health care it has to do politics and we won and your party lost.

Posted by: rainman2 | November 6, 2009 12:25 PM

If you are an AARP Member and do not agree with their support of the government run health care then shred your AARP card and send it to the AMERICAN SENIORS ASSOCIATION ("ASA"). ASA has the same benefits but is against government run health care. Send them your AARP membership card and get an extra year membership for no extra cost. AARP the death of a thousand cuts, have at thee:

Posted by: Bubbette1 | November 6, 2009 11:32 AM

I e-mailed several days back expressing my concerns regarding the health care bill.

Today I received a reply that showed they had not read my message and proudly announced they were supporing the health care bill.

My response will be opening and returning all of their requests to join programs with a large no written across the solicitation. Then they can pay the cost of postage and when it comes time to renew my membership I will decline.

It appears that AARP has become an affliate group associated with the Democratic party!

Posted by: mwhoke | November 6, 2009 9:52 AM


Posted by: HEGARTY111 | November 5, 2009 8:57 PM


Posted by: HEGARTY111 | November 5, 2009 8:53 PM

Odumbo does nothing but tell lies.
Look at this site andse him tell seven lies in under two minutes.
What a lowlife scumbag he and his corrupt party are.

Posted by: LarryG62 | November 5, 2009 8:39 PM

Pelosi Breaks Pledge to Put Final Health Care Bill Online for 72 Hours Before Vote
Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office tells THE WEEKLY STANDARD that the speaker will not allow the final language of the health care to be posted online for 72 hours before bringing the bill to a vote on the House floor, despite her September 24 statement that she was "absolutely" committed to doing so.


Another democrat lie. How many can you people take? do you democrats really drink koolaid or are you just gullible?

Posted by: charlietuna666 | November 5, 2009 7:27 PM

AARP has again thrown its members under the bus while playing lap dog to the Obama administration.

Posted by: cathamby | November 5, 2009 5:59 PM

AARP, the AMA and most Americans are in favor of Health Care Reform with a Public Option. Can't wait to see how FauxNews tries to spin this one into more lies and deceit. It's time America caught up with the rest of the civilized countries and got out from under the failed policies of the Republicans.

Posted by: rurik | November 5, 2009 4:25 PM


Posted by: Jeff-for-progress | November 5, 2009 4:20 PM

Mr. President: "First, Do No Harm." This rogue program has infiltrated health care facilities, according to its victims...


* Thousands of Americans, deemed to be "dissidents" or undesirables, targeted by Bush legacy program for debilitating microwave/laser assault, held hostage in their own homes to fed-supported vigilante "community policing" stalking units, equipped with warrantless GPS devices, who vandalize and terrorize as local police look the other way.

* "Directed energy weapons," portable units and a nationwide installation employing cell towers and satellites, induce weakness, exhaustion, head and body aches, physical and neurological impairment, strokes, aneurysms, cancer -- and many victims do not realize what is making them sick.

* Regional Homeland Security- administered "fusion centers" reportedly serve as command centers for covert electromagnetic radiation attacks, pervasive surveillance, financial sabotage of those identified as "dissidents," "trouble-makers" or slandered as threats to society.

* Use of microwave weaponry to torture and impair political opponents recently confirmed by deposed Honduras President Manuel Zelaya.

* Pleas for justice, to local police and FBI, go unanswered -- as do demands for a Department of Justice Civil Rights Division investigation and congressional hearings.

"These are crimes against humanity and the Constitution, being perpetrated under the cover of national security and 'safe streets' by multiple federal and local agencies and commands -- an American genocide hiding in plain sight, enabled by the naivete of those who think 'it can't happen here.'" -- Victor Livingston, former reporter for WTXF-TV Philadelphia, Phila. Bulletin, N.Y. Daily News, St. Petersburg Times; producer/host, MSG Network Sports Business Report; columnist,


Posted by: scrivener50 | November 5, 2009 3:31 PM

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.


© 2009 The Washington Post Company