Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

State of the Union text: Obama "will not walk away from" health care

President Obama plans to address health care reform in the State of the Union, touting the advantages of his plan and urging Congress to pass it.

From the prepared text:

And it is precisely to relieve the burden on middle-class families that we still need health insurance reform.
Now let's be clear - I did not choose to tackle this issue to get some legislative victory under my belt. And by now it should be fairly obvious that I didn't take on health care because it was good politics.
I took on health care because of the stories I've heard from Americans with pre-existing conditions whose lives depend on getting coverage; patients who've been denied coverage; and families - even those with insurance - who are just one illness away from financial ruin.
After nearly a century of trying, we are closer than ever to bringing more security to the lives of so many Americans. The approach we've taken would protect every American from the worst practices of the insurance industry. It would give small businesses and uninsured Americans a chance to choose an affordable health care plan in a competitive market. It would require every insurance plan to cover preventive care. And by the way, I want to acknowledge our First Lady, Michelle Obama, who this year is creating a national movement to tackle the epidemic of childhood obesity and make our kids healthier.
Our approach would preserve the right of Americans who have insurance to keep their doctor and their plan. It would reduce costs and premiums for millions of families and businesses. And according to the Congressional Budget Office - the independent organization that both parties have cited as the official scorekeeper for Congress - our approach would bring down the deficit by as much as $1 trillion over the next two decades.
Still, this is a complex issue, and the longer it was debated, the more skeptical people became. I take my share of the blame for not explaining it more clearly to the American people. And I know that with all the lobbying and horse-trading, this process left most Americans wondering what's in it for them.
But I also know this problem is not going away. By the time I'm finished speaking tonight, more Americans will have lost their health insurance. Millions will lose it this year. Our deficit will grow. Premiums will go up. Patients will be denied the care they need. Small business owners will continue to drop coverage altogether. I will not walk away from these Americans, and neither should the people in this chamber.
As temperatures cool, I want everyone to take another look at the plan we've proposed. There's a reason why many doctors, nurses, and health care experts who know our system best consider this approach a vast improvement over the status quo. But if anyone from either party has a better approach that will bring down premiums, bring down the deficit, cover the uninsured, strengthen Medicare for seniors, and stop insurance company abuses, let me know. Here's what I ask of Congress, though: Do not walk away from reform. Not now. Not when we are so close. Let us find a way to come together and finish the job for the American people.

By Politics Editor  |  January 27, 2010; 7:17 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency , State of the Union  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: State of the Union excerpts: Obama on restoring public trust
Next: Rahm Emanuel tells Katie Couric: "We could have won that race"


To create jobs fast: Part-timed the over-aged workers in the government agencies

We need a new legislation to part-time the over-aged workers (65 or 70+) in the government agencies and schools. The law prohibits the agencies to retire out-dated workers, and make the governments in-efficient. Most of those over-aged workers are not short of money, they just scare to retire and die early. Part-timed the over-aged workers will make rooms for agencies to hire new, skilled and inexpensive workers, who need money to support their families desperately. This will make government agencies more lean and efficient. New legislation should allow agencies to part-time the over-aged workers, not fired. Thus, the experiences can be passed over without interruption, and the over-aged workers can find adjustment activities between work and retirement.

Posted by: dstsai1 | January 27, 2010 10:41 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: AMERICAWAKEUPNOW | January 27, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

What does it take to get through to these people who are determined to ram through a health care bill that the entire country hates?

My God, what does it take to get through to you people? You call yourselves 'elite.' If you were really of an elite intellect, you would be open to listen and learn of other ideas besides your own, this is the mark of an exceptional person, a person deserving to lead the nation. These people are not fit to lead, they are ignorant bullies, pushing their agenda and their progressive ideals upon an unwilling and impatient country.

Posted by: prossers7 | January 27, 2010 10:22 PM | Report abuse

Obama obviously cannot completely abandon health care tonight, but it's a savvy move in making it more a broad goal of his entire term rather than the most important issue to tackle immediately. It must be about jobs, jobs, jobs.

Posted by: parkerfl1 | January 27, 2010 8:39 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company