Posts Tagged - ‘house’

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McCain and Obama Face Off on Health Insurance Reform

Thursday, February 25th, 2010

(Image: Chesi – Fotos CC under CC 3.0)

One of the most famous attendees of the bipartisan healthcare reform summit is Republican Senator John McCain. The Arizona senator and President Obama’s opponent in the 2008 election has been a feisty counterpoint. Some would speculate that some bitterness from the bruising campaign was in play.

John McCain wants each state to be treated equally in any bill, and is concerned with legislative process. He spoke up against the budget reconciliation option the Obama administration is considering to push this health insurance plan through.

At one point, Obama agreed with one of his comments, which took McCain aback with shock. However, there was still some back-in-forth. His presence is slightly puzzling, since he is not a ranking member of relevant committees. Although McCain has previously been known for bipartisan cooperation with Democrats (such as the 2002 McCain-Feingold campaign finance bill), he is currently facing a more conservative Republican primary opponent. Therefore, he may not have the flexibility to compromise, even though there is a surprising amount of common ground when it comes to affordable health insurance.

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Health Insurance Summit Cheat Sheet

Thursday, February 18th, 2010

(Image: SEIU International under CC 2.0)

Wondering about the bipartisan healthcare reform summit proposed by President Obama? Despite skepticism that it is nothing more than an attempt to call their bluff, the Republican party is planning to participate. Here are more details. Remember that any of these facts can change at any time.

The Date: February 25th, one week from today.

The Participants: A total of 12 Democrats and nine Republicans, many of whom have played key roles in the affordable health insurance legislation’s path. Big names included are:

  • President Barack Obama (D)
  • Vice President Joe Biden (D)
  • Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius (D)
  • Office of Health Reform Director Nancy-Ann DeParle (D)
  • Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D)
  • Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D)
  • Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R)
  • House Republican Leader John Boehner (R)
  • as well as four members of Congress personally selected by each congressional leader.

In addition, both parties will have representation from the following committees, which had large roles in crafting the health insurance bills:

  • Senate Finance Committee
  • House Ways and Means Committee
  • House Energy and Commerce Committee
  • Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee
  • House Education and Labor Committee
  • House Education and Labor Committee

The Schedule: The summit process is scheduled to take place in this order:

  1. Opening remarks by Obama
  2. Remarks from a Republican leader (chosen by the party’s top officials)
  3. Remarks from a Democratic leader (similarly selected by party leaders)
  4. Open discussion among summit participants

The Topics: Expanding affordable health insurance coverage while containing costs. Republicans will be seeking answers on how healthcare reform will affect the national deficit.

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