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Posted at 2:32 PM ET, 01/18/2011

White House: House health-care law repeal attempt not 'serious'

By Perry Bacon Jr.

The Obama administration Tuesday dismissed the House's plans to vote on a repeal of the new health care law, with White House press secretary Robert Gibbs saying, "It isn't a serious legislative effort."

"I don't think it's going anywhere," Gibbs said his press briefing.

Although the House is expected to pass the repeal Wednesday, its chances are uncertain in the Democratic-controlled Senate. Even if the Senate did pass the repeal, Obama, who championed the health care overhaul, would likely veto it.

To be sure, the White House is not ignoring the GOP push to overturn what is perhaps the president's most ambitious piece of legislation since he entered office. The Department of Health and Human Services released a study on Wednesday morning arguing more than 100 million people are protected by a provision in the law that bars health insurance companies from denying coverage to those who already have illnesses.

And on its blog, the White House is posting videos of Americans speaking of how they have benefited from the law's provisions.

By Perry Bacon Jr.  | January 18, 2011; 2:32 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency  
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Comments

I find it astounding that America has such a patchwork medical insurance program. I lived in Canad as a landed immigrant. When I produced my Sate of Alaska provided insurance card when I had heart surgery in Canada, the hospital staff groaned and said they would bill BCHIS because they got paid in a timely way, did not get a bunch of "dodge the payments when possible, and it did not require hours of rime spent by one of their staff to collect the bill. By the ay, that was my second heart surgery and the care was very good, up to par with the previous surgical care IU had when I lived in Honolulu. Of course all these nay sayers who have never experienced universal health coverage see a boggy man behind every tree.

Posted by: mJJ2 | January 19, 2011 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Arrogance knows no bounds in this administration.

Posted by: bevjoe | January 19, 2011 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Since this bill was passed without anyone really knowing what was in it, it should be repealed,trashed and buried. The way Reid and Pelosi rammed this bill down our throats without a thought about how the majority of Americans felt, demonstrates their disregard for everything but their own agenda.
A new Healthcare bill that really addresses the needs of most Americans. Unfortunately, those who are too lazy to work and expect the government to spoon feed them for thier entire life may not fare so well. But that is their decision. Obviously most people need assistance at some point in their lives due to circumstances beyond their control, and temporary assistance should be available to them, but the lifelong welfare mentality that the government has bred is wrong and must be stoped.
The healthcare bill should also eliminate or punish the ambulance chasing attorneys who seek frivolous lawsuits, or those healthcare providers who submit fraudulant claims, or the pharmaceutical companies that charge rediculous prices for their drugs to Americans, but provide deep discounted drugs to other countries.

Posted by: brooklynborn1 | January 19, 2011 10:29 AM | Report abuse

I thought the idiot Gibbs was gone..With no funding this bill will be seriously damaged and will go away

Posted by: atthun | January 19, 2011 7:11 AM | Report abuse

I thought the idiot Gibbs was gone..With no funding this bill will be seriously damaged and will go away

Posted by: atthun | January 19, 2011 7:11 AM | Report abuse

I thought the idiot Gibbs was gone..With no funding this bill will be seriously damaged and will go away

Posted by: atthun | January 19, 2011 7:10 AM | Report abuse

Just like the Obama administration bringing a knife to a gun fight with "We the People"!
This Obama White House continues to believe that "We the People" work for them when it is just the opposite.

Posted by: rteske | January 19, 2011 7:01 AM | Report abuse

ohian - you just don't get it. You are not most American's. The idea that your beliefs are the only one's that count is the ultimate in arrogance, offsensive, and un-american.

Polls have shown over and over that MOST American's do not want an outright appeal. Modifications certainly. 25% of those who are against the law want it to go FARTHER.

You are in the minority.

The reason this repeal effort isn't serious is simply because it is impossible to actually happen. The Senate will never act on it, and the President will veto it even if they do. That's a pretty good reason to me to dismiss the whole health-care repeal party going on in the House as a total waste of time. Anyone taking it seriously is sadly and badly misinformed.

Posted by: reussere | January 18, 2011 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Why is it that too many people these days want the government to run their lives for them and to pay for that management??? Just how did our grand parents and great grand parents and so on pay for their health problems........they paid out of their own pockets or they sold a cow or they went without. If some people would refrain from buying homes they can't afford, Vehicles above their means and Boats and toys they really don't need or can't afford then they just might have money for the things they DO need like paying for their own health issues. Too many these days think our government is nothing more than a printing press for money and they should be handed money because they can't find a job or because they are ill or because they don't have the same things their neighbors have! If you want to be a crybaby and complain about what someone else has then go and do their job. They probably worked harder to get where they are. This nation has become nothing more than predominately Greedy, Lazy disrespectful crybabies that think the government and everyone else owes them a living. Don't like what the insurance companies do??? ........fine then save your money and don't pay for their insurance and if most people had this attitude then their prices and regulations would come down... Pay for your own way or don't complain. For over 40 years I have paid every dime for my own health care and because of that I have had to do without some of the other things I wanted but I can sleep nights knowing that no-one paid for MY health other than ME. President Kennedy had the best saying ever...."
Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country"......Too bad that many don't have the integrity to live up to that great saying.

Posted by: kd5odx | January 18, 2011 7:27 PM | Report abuse

It seems that those in favor of repeal have sterile, hypothetical arguments that are not empirically replicable by their adversaries who want and need insurance. Many of us have real life examples of friends and family who are going to die or who have already died as a result of health insurance discrimination.

Posted by: idahodemocrat | January 18, 2011 4:35 PM | Report abuse

I retired over 12 years ago at an early age and all of my life I paid my own way including whenever I had to see a doctor or go to a hospital for whatever reason, I paid CASH and only recently when this president came up with and signed this forced health care law did I go and sign up for my V.A. health benefits as my way of telling the government "you are not going to tell me what to do" so now instead of ME paying for my own health care as I always have for over 40 years, our ignorant government can now pay for every dime of my healthcare..........now isn't that smart on their part? I am willing to bet there are many many others just like me!!!

Posted by: kd5odx | January 18, 2011 4:28 PM | Report abuse

The only way that a pre-existing condition ban can work is if everyone is forced to have health insurance. This would spread out the high cost of those with the conditions around to those who rarely see a doctor.

Without this forced coverage, the costs would skyrocket and only those who are sick would bother to have insurance. This is the primary focus of all the lawsuits. Does the government have the right to force those who chose not to be insured to buy insurance that they choose not to have.

The system is great if everyone is insured and everyone is paying into the system. But this means that no one has the right to say no. It doesn't work if people can opt out.

Posted by: PapaGeek | January 18, 2011 4:21 PM | Report abuse

If Cantor and Boehner described the situation accurately they would not incessantly repeat "the people have spoken" instead we would hear the words that we already know, our corporate campaign sponsors have spoken. Repealing health care reform seems to be yet another thinly veiled act of discrimination which burdens the people who are least able to defend themselves, the poor and disabled.

Posted by: idahodemocrat | January 18, 2011 4:20 PM | Report abuse

If you are truly a VietVet then you already get healthcare for FREE from the V.A. - What many are not thinking about is the mere fact that one more choice is being made for many by our corrupt government regardless if you like it or not and many people are not going to be able to afford another payment no matter how small it is, especially those on fixed incomes. I get my healthcare for free form the VA but it is about time we stand up and fight for those less fortunate that can't pay even another $20 a month. There should be an OPT-Out Clause in this for those that choose not to accept it and that would settle everything. This so-called President is delusional and arrogant. The only Amercian he truly cares about is himself and even him being an American is questionable.

Posted by: kd5odx | January 18, 2011 4:20 PM | Report abuse

The only way that a pre-existing condition ban can work is if everyone is forced to have health insurance. This would spread out the high cost of those with the conditions around to those who rarely see a doctor.

Without this forced coverage, the costs would skyrocket and only those who are sick would bother to have insurance. This is the primary focus of all the lawsuits. Does the government have the right to force those who chose not to be insured to buy insurance that they choose not to have.

The system is great if everyone is insured and everyone is paying into the system. But this means that no one has the right to say no. It doesn't work if people can opt out.

Posted by: PapaGeek | January 18, 2011 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Having had throat cancer which may have come from agent orange when I served in Viet Nam. And after having my job of 33 years disappear as a staff reduction last year. I can say I want health care and its not easy getting it with cancer. My man in congress is going to vote to repeal and I'm going to vote to repeal him next election. Life shouldn't be this hard for me now.

Posted by: piemcj | January 18, 2011 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Having had throat cancer which may have come from agent orange when I served in Viet Nam. And after having my job of 33 years disappear as a staff reduction last year. I can say I want health care and its not easy getting it with cancer. My man in congress is going to vote to repeal and I'm going to vote to repeal him next election. Life shouldn't be this hard for me now.

Posted by: piemcj | January 18, 2011 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Having had throat cancer which may have come from agent orange when I served in Viet Nam. And after having my job of 33 years disappear as a staff reduction last year. I can say I want health care and its not easy getting it with cancer. My man in congress is going to vote to repeal and I'm going to vote to repeal him next election. Life shouldn't be this hard for me now.

Posted by: piemcj | January 18, 2011 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Boehner is just strutting around like a sterile rooster.

Posted by: thomasmc1957 | January 18, 2011 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Will see how serious they take it in 2012. Obviously the WH is worried & if they are/were smart they will cooperate & maybe even suggest some changes in the legislation that hurts a bunch of people outside of the health care component of the law; e.g 1099's to everyone, exemptions, etc. No one knew what was in it & they still can't tell you. But there is a positive opportunity for refinement as it is going to be a couple years before most of this happens. Otherwise the WH turns over & then there will be no question the law will be repealed. So deal with the seriousness now or have nothing later. Pretty clear to me dismissive behaviour will bring a pile on.

Posted by: A_R_Med | January 18, 2011 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Oh those Republicans always kidding and joking about. They'd rather play a practical joke than work on real legislation. And Obama, such a good judge of character.

Posted by: JTinAlex | January 18, 2011 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Conservative Policies that Actually Cost Jobs Are never to be discussed. How many jobs have conservative governors cost just by ending rail projects? In New Jersey, Ohio, Florida, and Wisconsin? But those governors are small-timers in the job elimination game. How many jobs have 'free trade' policies cost us? How many jobs have financial deregulation cost us? How many jobs has the Fed's obsession with the inflation half of its mandate cost us? How many jobs has our 'market based' approach to health care cost us? How many jobs have our regressive tax structures cost us? How many jobs, in California alone, has the execrable Prop 13 cost us? How many jobs have we lost because conservatives objected to fiscal stimulus?


Conservatives love to claim that liberal policies cost jobs - but the facts don't back them up. Reality has a well known liberal bias.


The GOP is saying we will lose 650k jobs if it isnt repealed, when in actuality we will be gaining 650k jobs... If 650k people retire, those jobs dont disappear- there will be 650k job openings. Meaning 650k jobs are created.


On top of that, 250k jobs will be lost if it IS repealed...


So instead of explaining all that, convert it into soundbyte format that the average joe can understand: REPEALING HEALTH CARE WILL COST 900k JOBS.

.

Posted by: DrainYou | January 18, 2011 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Republicans won't be happy until they've taken the country back into the Dark Ages, like the Taliban did in Afghanistan!

Posted by: thomasmc1957 | January 18, 2011 3:58 PM | Report abuse

The headline should read "New Congress Wastes the People's Time and Money".

.

Posted by: blarsen1 | January 18, 2011 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I love the comments that refer to the prohibitive cost of covering people with pre-existing conditions. What should we do? Let people die for lack of coverage?

Maybe it is time for people to wake up. America is the ONLY civilized nation where health care is a privilege, not a right. That is pretty immoral, in my book. Especially considering it is religious zealots that are most fanatical about keeping health care, primarily for the rich...the poor to fend for themselves.

My problem with health care is that it did not go far enough. I think Obama should have started bargaining with single-payer, and then 'settled' for a public option. The mandate system bugs me, as is, but it is a start in changing our absurd system, which is totally driven by profit.

For those of you who think health care should not be for everyone, but only those who can afford it...please don't tell me how pious you are. Jesus would be ashamed of you.

Posted by: leliorisen | January 18, 2011 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Those who oppose the law must have never come across situation where they were without health insurance or were rejected because of pre-existing conditions.

Posted by: bhendes | January 18, 2011 3:55 PM | Report abuse

If Obama's legislation stays in place it will do good, but not enough of it, and it will do NOTHING to contain cost.

Single Payer is the ONLY way to extend healthcare to EVERYONE AND CONTAIN COST.

Support HR 676

Posted by: InsuranceTeaseDOTcom | January 18, 2011 3:52 PM | Report abuse

If the repugs aren't taking it seriously, you other socialist may want to. We have a lot of tar and feathers out here, and you will not be able to kill us all.
C/p every where.

Posted by: wannabersc | January 18, 2011 3:52 PM | Report abuse

I am sure the health care bill will be treated like the weekend in a couple of years - sacrosanct. Like the weekend the Liberals will force this health care bill down the cons throat and when the cons get used to having all the benifits this crazyness will stop... Maybe...

Posted by: rmrang | January 18, 2011 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Democrats just aren't very bright,if they thought the purpose was to "put insurance companies out of business."
How about Affordable Health Care?
How about Reducing healthcare Costs?
How about Reducing our healthcare premiums?
How about making it easier for businesses
to compete?
How about reducing Costs so that Americans
stop having to choose between paying their health insurance or making their house payment?
How about Reducing healthcare Costs so that More people can AFFORD it?

Posted by: ohioan | January 18, 2011 3:51 PM | Report abuse

If the repugs aren't taking it seriously, you other socialist may want to. We have a lot of tar and feathers out here, and you will not be able to kill us all.

Posted by: wannabersc | January 18, 2011 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Democrats just aren't very bright,if they thought the purpose was to "put insurance companies out of business."
How about Affordable Health Care?
How about Reducing healthcare Costs?
How about Reducing our healthcare premiums?
How about making it easier for businesses
to compete?
How about reducing Costs so that Americans
stop having to choose between paying their health insurance or making their house payment?
How about Reducing healthcare Costs so that More people can AFFORD it?

Posted by: ohioan | January 18, 2011 3:50 PM | Report abuse

I was part of California's Proposition 186 about 16 years ago! All I want for my adult children are the same cushy benefits legislators voted for themselves - that they take with them even if "fired" after a short time in office. You know, like John Boehner has. // Jean Clelland-Morin

Posted by: Clelland-Morin | January 18, 2011 3:48 PM | Report abuse

HHS boasts that 100 million with pre-existing conditions are covered but what they don't talk about is the prohibitive cost of that insurance. Obamacare is flawed legislation designed to pull the wool over the eyes of those to lazy to understand the ruse.

Posted by: jcarob | January 18, 2011 3:47 PM | Report abuse

I was part of California's Proposition 186 about 16 years ago! All I want for my adult children are the same cushy benefits legislators voted for themselves - that they take with them even if "fired" after a short time in office. You know, like John Boehner has. // Jean Clelland-Morin

Posted by: Clelland-Morin | January 18, 2011 3:46 PM | Report abuse

I was part of California's Proposition 186 about 16 years ago! All I want for my adult children are the same cushy benefits legislators voted for themselves - that they take with them even if "fired" after a short time in office. You know, like John Boehner has. // Jean Clelland-Morin

Posted by: Clelland-Morin | January 18, 2011 3:46 PM | Report abuse

The Republicans are a bunch of blood-sucking losers. The American people know that the Health Care Bill is a great deal for the average American and it will go far in putting private insurance companies out of business. There should be one Health care Provider and that is the federal government. mark Montgomery NYC, NY boboberg@nyc.rr.com

Posted by: boboberg | January 18, 2011 3:36 PM | Report abuse

I suppose the White House will take it seriously when the Republicans in the House, representing the view of the majority of Americans, do not fund Obamacare.

Posted by: johne37179 | January 18, 2011 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Wow, what a slap in the face for most Americans! Democrats "don't think this is serious"; they're "dismissing" us!!!
They're also dismissing over 20 States that
have taken action to declare ObamaCare Unconstitutional, I guess.
Talk about arrogance, WOW.

Posted by: ohioan | January 18, 2011 3:13 PM | Report abuse

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