8:05:50 PM: After painting himself into a corner in August and losing his base, Obama will try to reclaim the initiative. Maybe.
8:16:54 PM: A lot on the line for Obama, and the country.
8:18:46 PM: Obama says he wants to help responsible homeowners stay in their homes. So far, his program has failed miserably.
8:19:21 PM: Obama says his gov has helped bring the economy back from the brink.
8:20:53 PM: Not the first Prez to take up healthcare reform, but he wants to be the last. Good line, but his inaction last month tells another story.
8:22:24 PM: Makes the point that US lags behind other developed countries in healthcare.
8:22:48 PM: Do Americans believe healthcare is a right or a privilege? I wonder.
8:25:12 PM: Clapping when Obama said that no one in the US should be denied coverage by insurers. If everyone agrees, why the resistance?
8:26:02 PM: Obama takes his first shot at the “left” and “single payer”. He’s going “bipartisan”. Good luck.
8:26:59 PM: Everyone is now clapping because Obama just said we must build on the status quo, and not replace it. Insurance lobbyists must be happy.
8:28:41 PM: “Time for bickering is over.” “Time for action”. “Now is the time to deliver on healthcare”. Deliver what?
8:29:07 PM: Obama says his plan has three basic goals:
8:29:38 PM: 1) provide more security and stability to those who have health insurance
8:30:02 PM: 2) provide insurance for those who don’t.
8:30:36 PM: 3) slow the growth of healthcare costs for families, businesses, and government.
8:31:43 PM: Obama says his plan includes input from “everyone”! Great. I am not sure I care.
8:32:36 PM: He reiterates his plan will not cause those with insurance to change their plan or doctor, but it will make ins work better for you.
8:33:15 PM: His plan: ins companies cant deny coverage based on preexisting conditions, drop coverage when you get sick.
8:34:13 PM: Insurance companies cant cap coverage limits under his plan.
8:34:51 PM: So far, I am still waiting for the big stuff. This is beating around the edges.
8:35:25 PM: He says his plan will offer those without insurance “quality affordable coverage”.
8:36:07 PM: He’ll create an insurance exchange where individuals and biz can shop for insurance.
8:38:00 PM: Basically a giant group that everyone can be a member of.
8:38:42 PM: My question is, if we are ready to create an insurance exchange where individuals can go to, why do we still want to tie ins to work?
8:39:18 PM: Why not go all the way and let everyone go through the exchange….or did I just stumble into “single payer”?
8:41:00 PM: He says exchange will take effect in 4 years.
8:41:23 PM: In the meantime, they will offer low cost coverage for everyone?!?
8:42:03 PM: At least McCain is happy.
8:43:23 PM: Individuals will be required to carry basic health insurance. Mandate. Mandate. Mandate.
8:43:46 PM: It seems to me that American politicians turn the healthcare problem on its head.
8:44:14 PM: “Significant details need to be ironed out”. Laughter all around.
8:44:29 PM: No mention of public option yet.
8:45:26 PM: Obama now moving on to clearing misconceptions. I smell trouble ahead!
8:46:22 PM: Hmm. Noise in the hall when Obama says “death panels” are a lie. I guess some in GOP dont think so.
8:47:03 PM: Obama used the word “lie”. Good. Most politicians never seem to be able to call a lie a lie.
8:47:55 PM: Standing ovation from Dems. GOP sitting on their hands. Does this mean GOP members are pro-Lying?
8:49:30 PM: Wow! Once Obama used the word “lie”. Now someone from the GOP side just called Obama a liar on live TV. Simply surreal.
8:50:26 PM: Joe Biden just shook his head in disgust. Can you feel the bipartisan love in the halls of congress?
8:57:40 PM: First mention of public option from Obama.
8:58:02 PM: “choice and competition” are guiding principles.
8:58:56 PM: “No interest in putting insurance companies out of business”. He wants to hold them accountable.
9:00:23 PM: “An additional step we can take to keep insurance companies honest is by making a not-for-profit public option available…”
9:01:11 PM: Dems on their feet. GOP sitting on their hands.
9:01:31 PM: “public insurance option would have to be self-sufficient”
9:02:18 PM: Good anology. Compares impact of public option to how public universities compete with private universities.
9:03:06 PM: “Public option means to end”. The end being healthcare reform.
9:07:50 PM: Obama going directly after GOP hypocrisy on Medicare.
9:10:55 PM: “We didnt come to fear the future, we came here to shape it”. Kennedyesque.
9:12:17 PM: Well written speech. Let’s see if he can back it up.