January 22nd, 2010
07:00 PM ET

Should Congress give up trying to pass health care?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

A majority of Americans want Congress to put the brakes on health care reform.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/01/22/art.nurse.jpg caption=""]
A new USA Today/Gallup Poll shows 55 percent of those surveyed say lawmakers should suspend work on the current health care bills and consider alternatives. Only 39 percent say they want Congress to try to pass the current bill.

32 percent say the president and Democrats are right to make health care reform their top priority right now. 46 percent say health care is important, but other problems should be addressed first; and 19 percent say it shouldn't be a top priority.

Meanwhile, President Obama is vowing to press ahead - even though he acknowledges health care reform has "run into a bit of a buzz saw." Party leaders like Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi insist health care will move forward - but other lawmakers, much like the American public, are losing their appetite for fast action.

Connecticut Democratic Senator Chris Dodd says his colleagues should "maybe take a breather for a month, six weeks" to regroup after the loss in Massachusetts.

There's no question this week's election has made the road to health care reform more difficult. Pelosi has ruled out what was the preferred option for some Democrats - the House passing the Senate bill as is. She doesn't have the votes.

And, although there's a sense that a scaled-back health care bill might be the best route for Congress to take - even that might be easier said than done with the current political winds blowing across Washington.

Here’s my question to you: Should Congress give up trying to pass health care?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Ben from Boston writes:
Jack, Congress should stop the bureaucratic, bribe-ridden mess they have been considering and move to the presidential/Republican suggestion to divide the bill into parts that are easy to understand and vote on each one separately - starting with the parts that have most support, like prohibiting insurance companies from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions.

Jeff writes:
Jack, Let's be honest here. The health care bill was never really about health care. It was an attempt to transfer 1/6th of our economy away from the private sector and into the hands of the federal government. They got the banks, then the auto industry, and the health care industry was next on the list.

James writes:
Republicans are the real-life death panels. How many people will die this year because of lack of health coverage?

Gary writes:
As a small business owner who sees about 8 percent of my profits go towards catastrophic health insurance for a handful of people, I was really hoping for some real health insurance reform… Unfortunately, a lot of members of Congress rely on insurance industry dollars to grease their campaigns, so reform will probably never happen while these politicians bow down to the big money.

Linda writes:
Unfortunately, the current Senate bill is the only one that might get passed, but since it really does nothing to control costs, I think approval may end up costing people more in the long run. Team Obama doesn't seem to have a good grasp of the strength of his opposition on this or any other topic. I think health care will have to wait until we get some real Democratic leadership.

Ron from Pleasanton, California writes:
We need to pass health care for all NOW. Strike while the iron is hot, otherwise it'll be another 50 years before we get it done.

Mark from Oklahoma City writes:
Yes, Congress has my permission to turn the lights off and go home and just leave us the hell alone!

Filed under: Congress • Health care
soundoff (309 Responses)
  1. Darryl From Lake Forest

    Think A.D.D. Jack. Congress only works on two things, dividing on party lines and raising money for reelection. It's asking to much for Congress with to work on health care. Bank reform... sorry what was the question? just give a minute... hold that thought...

    January 22, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  2. Jackie NP

    Absolutely NOT. There are people dying and suffering needlessly all over this country for lack of health care. We should be ashamed as a nation to continue to let this happen when there are countries far smaller and not nearly as wealthy that provide for their citizens. I think our congressmen could benefit from spending time with physicians, nurses and social workers in their home districts to meet some of those suffering without insurance...".walk a mile in their shoes." The citizens of Massachusetts already have healthcare for 90+% of the people in their state under a Republican plan...why should they care about the rest of us especially if they may have to pay a little more and get less reimbursement.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  3. Warren in Ohio

    If you're going to do something, do it right or don't do it at all. The current healthcare reform plan is as sick and broken as the current health care system. Go back to the drawing board and get it right. In others words, come up with a single-payer plan that covers everyone, just like the rest of the civilized world has.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  4. Theresa

    Face it --when people are stubborn nothing gets accomplished. By the looks of things it doesn't matter what Pres. Obama suggests it won't go through. Someone has to be in charge but it doesn't look as if this is the case!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  5. Ronda Westfall

    Yes, why are they going after health care? Reform the Insurance industry! Insurance controls how the medical industry practices, what is charged, and who gets the medical attention. That is crazy for an industry to control the American Health Care System. Obama's plan gives them even more power.

    My son's decision to become a medical doctor will depend on the outcome of Health Care. This bill would loose our brightest students into other fields. He does not want to go to school for 12 to 14 years to be controlled by Congress regulations.

    I only know of two Americans who want this bill passed. Please help stop it.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  6. Dan in Kent, WA


    This country needs comprehensive health care reform. We also need strong banking and financial consumer protection laws. And we need limits on Corporate political spending. Corporations are not "Persons" protected by the Bill of Rights.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  7. J.L from NJ

    NO WAY !! The Dems need to push thru a watered down version that assures that people with pre-existing conditions can get and keep insurance and that covers ALL children. If they don't do this, they should pull out of the insurance plan that covers them and their families and buy insurance of their own.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  8. Faith Gagne

    Dear Mr. Cafferty:

    I was very happy to hear the President to day in Ohio. I thought he was in top shape and working hard. I wish some of you people would cut the guy a little slack. I am an Independent Massachusetts voter and I did NOT vote for Mr. Big Stuff, Scott Brown the phony. I WANT health care reform ...Reform being the key word here...and I want the public option! I think President Obama is genuine and we are lucky to have him as president. Scott Brown doesn't care about health reform for the populace because he's got his and he's working for the insurance companies.. He's got the best health care on the planet. Do the senate and congress health provisions have pre-existing conditions and other exclusions? I want what he's got and Health Care Reform is the next best thing. Smarten up America.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  9. Sam

    Tag it and bag it! Needs to concentrate on jobs, though to get enough done on that front to lessen the Democratic massacre coming at the ballot boxes in November is not likely.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  10. ken johnson

    We need to continue to keep the fire under Congress. They need to come to a quick agreement. Cut the politics or the voting people of this country will replace them.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  11. Jon F San Francisco

    No, we shouldn't stop health care reform, but we do need to scrap the current bill and write a new, simple, uncorrupted one that actually reforms health care – and not an expensive band aid.

    The President needs to stop pushing for a timetable, and allow Congress to do this thing correctly – compete with accurate cost projections. Too much of the old bill was politics. Now is a good time for the President and Congress to show that they can improve the way Washington works – not show how corrupt it can get.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  12. ken silver

    This country is in dire need of health reform and the dems will bring a bill to the people. It's a moral imperative and an economic necessity, just like the jobs creation problem we face. Bringing us closer to par with the rest of western society, the health passage will be endorsed just as Medicare was long ago. The nay sayers and tea takers are navel gazers and most probably have never experienced family disability or major illness.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  13. susan

    No Jack,I dont think we should stop fighting for better Health Care. However, anything that was good for the middle class was taken out of this Bill some time ago,and lots of things were given away to get votes. Still other sweetners were put in for the Pharmacuetical and Insurance companies-the whole thing was a disgrace. All the Dems seem to want to do was push this one through (remember the Patriot Act?) regardless of the consequences. I think the time when the majority of the people in this country would get a fair shake in anything the Congress or Senate does is gone. We need to have a third party,if for no other reason,than to have one political group that still believes our vote is more important than their pocketbooks. For now.....

    January 22, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  14. Joe Bellino - Los Angeles

    I don't understand why an administration, who campaigned against a "blank-check" republican administration, would want to continue to run-up the nations debt.
    It seems that the economy & loss of jobs should be at the forefront of all major political decisions.
    A passed health-care bill will not prevent people from losing their jobs, homes and businesses. It won't help stimulate the economy. It will only bring on more cost and debt.
    I guess it will make the future "homeless people", who will be living on the street because they lost their job, healthier.
    After all, isn't that what's most important to our current administration?

    January 22, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  15. Luci - Illinois

    No, we definately need Public Option health care. I do not think the majority is against it. The Media keeps telling us that we are against it. I guess they think if they tell us that enough, we will believe it.
    I have a brain and do not need the Media to tell me how I believe. If you would only once be in Obama's court, I would be pleasantly surprised.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  16. Cheryl Sandahl

    No... it should not be dropped. But lose Pelosi and the strong arm tactic that Mr.Obama pushed for before the vote. Listen to the people and let our Senators and Congressman vote for what their constituents want. What they vote for should be for ALL Americans. I do believe what is good for the goose is good for the gander. What makes Politicians any different from the rest of America.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  17. Mike in Indiana

    50,000 citizens die each year simply because they don't have insurance. If it costs me a few hundred dollars a year to save 30,000 of those lives, that's a blessing not a loss.
    Pass the current bill now, fix the defects later.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  18. Kyle

    Here's a simple answer to a simple question. YES

    January 22, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  19. Larry Peter

    It's time for teh democrats to get a backbone and get health care passed. If they continue to appease republicans, the recent Brown victory will look like a ripple compred to a tidal wave that will hit them in upcomming elections. The republicans are the "PARTY OF NO: and there will never be bi-partism. This about the defeat of Obama with the lack of concern about Americans. I also think Leaderman has to be sent a message that the democrats no longer need a turn-coat representing them. Democrats need to remember "United we stand, divided we fall"!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  20. John Ed Davis

    I am requesting that Congress should kill this Health Care Bill. I think this bill should be published where every one can read the complete thing.Then the public will see what a bad bill this really is. Those that don't have health care should get a job and buy their own. Alot of the public that don't have health care are sitting on their butts, receiving a free check and want us to support them. I am not interested in that. I think those getting a free check should be required to get a complete physical at the health departments and if they are able to work, cut them off. If they need help, by all means help them.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  21. Bob - Pittsburgh Pa

    Put the brakes on all these punative ideas. It's starting to feel like I'm the little kid on the playground and the "Bully" is after my lunch money.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  22. Aaron

    YESSSSSSSS!!!!!! Is he really asking this question still?

    January 22, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  23. perry jones

    yes it is not there job to run health care they should be setting bounders and regs. that they will not do any thing with or enforce
    perry jones
    council bluffs ia

    January 22, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  24. don


    Health care needs an overhaul there is no doubt. But to trust this issue to the likes of Nancy Pellosi and harry Reid? Are you kidding me?
    It would be like leaving Barney Frank in charge of the banks!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  25. Tom in Oregon

    Here we go. Back to the status quo- what the Republicans wanted. Rape the common guy. They don't care about us- watch our healthcare costs continue to grow. Just as they want it- only the rich will get healthcare.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  26. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    No! If you do not get healthcare pass people will not see health protection and financial benefits from the new protections against abuses of the health insurance practices!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  27. Bob

    Congress should give up, period! Everybody just resign, and we can start all over with brand new elections (and current incumbents are automatically disqualified...) They haven't done ANYthing, and we should save ourselves some money by stopping their salaries, insurance coverages and pensions.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  28. jopsjennings

    The next time anybody tries to pass health care, they had better remember that it is never over until it is over. There is no reason to try to play nice with the Republicans, and whenever victory is within reach it must be grasped immediately and firmly with both hands and never relinquished.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  29. Peter Principle

    There is a saying that a camel is a horse designed by a committee.
    If true, this health care bill is a pork chop designed by the likes of Ben Nelson and all of the politicians and special interests associated with the health care industry. Who were they kidding?

    The current bill does not even touch the basic structure of run-away medical cost escalation in all aspects of medical care in the U.S.
    That will only be addressed when the system fails, which it will do within hte next 15 years, but not until then.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  30. Steve Canada

    No..Its readily apparent that the people that opposed this have done a proper job of making their case against the bill that exists now. Do think that changing the system is totally out the window is wrongheaded..Move it to the middle and get it passed..

    January 22, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  31. Linda

    I think it's sad that the congress cannot just govern from their principles instead of always being influenced by the next election or the special interest groups that pour billions of dollars into the process. I am personally fed up with our system–it has gotten out of control.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  32. TC in Illinois

    Yes, then blame the Republican Party for the next 15 years when Medical premium increases and when workers loose their insurance due to more outsourcing so companies can give their CEO's their 100 million dollar bonuses!!!
    Republicans are the party of NO !
    No-Job, No-Medical, No-Pension, No-Abortions, No-Taxes for the rich, No-Social Security, No-Medicare, No-Minimum Wage increase, No-Common Sense...
    Wow is America ever SCREWED...

    January 22, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  33. Cheryl In North Carolina

    Oh please American we need Health Care !!! I hope it goes through. My hubby needs major surgery and cannot get help but yet we are sending medical supplies to the Haite people. Give us a break....................If you have current medical coverage this is no great loss for you but try to think of others who have lost their jobs, homes and now health is failing. How much can the american people go through before we actually can get help....

    Cheryl In North Carolina

    January 22, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  34. tom munson

    Barak's not giving up on health care? Right, and Capt. Ahab never let go of Moby Dick( even after the Capt. was dead).

    January 22, 2010 at 6:36 pm |
  35. dustin

    Health care is an important issue that needs to be addressed – unfortunately, Congress doesn't have the creativity to address is well enough. Instead of rehashing or making modifications to old ideas, they ened to take an entirely new angle. Get some fresh ideas.
    What about running health care as a utility and using decoupling to keep costs down?
    Or how about placing the Government in the middle between consumers and insurers – create a Health Care Consumer Protection Board. The Board would establish a base plan that all insurers must carry and negotiate a rate for that plan directly with health care providers. Insurance companies would be required to offer the base plan all at the same base rate, but have the freedom to "customize" plans with add ons and/or other perks. For example, the base plan could apply to non-smokers and allow insurance companies to adjust the rate as they see fit for smokers.
    Or how about if the government gets involved in Research and development? That way they have some level of influence in the pharmaceutical and medical market.
    How about forcing insurers to treat seniors who need extra care (ie hospice type care or somethign like that) as dependents? So if you have your 90 grandmother at home and she can't take care of herself, it's the same as having a 10 year old dependent for insurance purposes?

    These ideas may not work, but at least they bring something new to the table to consider.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  36. Donna Bergman

    I believe Congress should pass a health care reform bill now because millions of Americans desperately need affordable, adequate health care coverage. They have been waiting for a long time, and time is running out for them. The Insurance industry has shown no mercy to those who can't afford their unreasonable rates for policies. They continue to drop policy holders if they can't make a big profit. They only want to insure healthy young, healthy people, so they don't have to pay out any claims. They deny claims of those who they think will cost them a lot of money. They don't care if these people really, truly need a surgery, or procedure, or treatment to save their life. The insurance industry is only interested in making a huge profit. Health care for profit should be done away with. There are other countries who don't have health care for profit and their systems are superior to the US. Our whole health care system needs to be overhauled. But for right now, even some positive legislation is better than none.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  37. Marc L from NY

    Congress and the President are trying to force a change in a system that will only affect a small percentage of Americans. In times of plenty, people tend to be less concerned with things they don't think will affect them directly. In tough times, like we are in now, they want to see our representatives in government working hard to fix the problems, not wasting time on the less important stuff. Unfortunately, we tend to be very short sighted, and unfortunately for the Democrats, they picked the wrong time to address this topic. I personally think that there is a more sinister agenda behind this health care reform. What they are saying doesn't add up. Either way, the Democrats come out of this as losers. If they push their agenda, most members will lose their seats in the next election. If they cede their position on health care reform, then they are admitting that they lost the battle, at least for the moment. All I know is, the Democrats have been the majority in the government for a year now and already they are looking like they are not in control of their destiny.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  38. Jack in Michigan

    No. The problems still exist. Our congressional leaders should work to find innovative ways to compromise and move forward together. I'm tired of the rhetoric about what this means for the 2010 election. Here's a news flash to Congress-do what is right and let the elections will take care of themselves.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  39. Chuck from Rogue River, Oregon

    Finally, some common sense comes into play to overcome the hysteria that was steam rolling us toward a bill loaded with backroom deal making and treats for the special interests. If the Libs want a bill, they should take the last-chance Senate version. Otherwise, they will end up with nothing. Naw, that's too practical for them. The Dems will eat each other.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  40. Mad Mike

    No... Just do it right this time

    January 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  41. Michael

    No, Congress should not give up. Given that the American people have the attention span (and accompanying foresight) of 6th graders, Congress and the President should ignore the polls.

    True leadership often means doing what's right, and NOT governing by poll.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  42. Richard

    Politics aside, this nation desperately needs health care reform. The current national system, to the extent that it is a "system" at all and not just a bunch of unconnected patchwork services, is a failure. It is not a matter of if, but when. Health care costs have been increasing at a rate far, far higher than inflation, so the present national cost for health care is already beyond sustainability. Politicians of all persuasions had better get things fixed now, while patches still work, or face a complete disaster, with a total breakdown of health care delivery and total chaos, wich a concurrent national financial disaster far worse than anything we have seen in recent years. There is no more time for bickering, and there has been no time for a couple of decades. Let's hope that it isn't already too late.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  43. Tracy from Bullhead City, AZ

    No – but they should have bi-partisan input on the bill. They need TORT reform and open up insurance across state lines. The bill they have now would cost me $6,000 per year more for insurance. It would also be nice if the country could read the bill before they vote something so astrinomical into law. I am so tired of the spend, spend , spend congress. Vote 'em out of office!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  44. Kathryn

    No!!! The need is no less urgent, and what few seem to 'get' is that people want meaningful reform with a majority favoring the public option!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  45. Rich McKinney, Texas

    No jack they need to pass a healthcare bill but what they really need to do is simply expand Medicare and Medicaid to cover the uninsured and poor that trillion dollars into a system that already works and is established instead of trying to reinvent the wheel.. Then they need to get to work on creating jobs. If people had jobs they could help pay for their own insurance. The economy is not going to get any better until people are put back to work plain and simple.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  46. Victor

    It's either the House votes on the Senate Health Care bill and later on makes a companion bill to fix any agreed upon faults(like funding) or Health Care Reform is dead just as Republicans seem to want.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  47. Joyce Francis

    If Congress and the Senate and the president believe we can afford a national health plan, then they should be able to fund those without insurance under Medicaid!
    We have far more pressing concerns in this country in these times than a health bill. This group in DC have dropped the ball where our ecoomy is concerned and that should be our next priority, right after securing our borders!

    Jacksonville, FL

    January 22, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  48. reddy33

    Give it up already!!! In the first place, we do NOT want the government 'meddling' in this, when they have screwed up so many other programs with their incessant bureacracy (sic)........i.e. .......post office, any gov't 'program', medicare, s.s., etc. why in the world should they think they can 'fix' health care? Granted, it needs some adjustments to get rid of the graft and corruption, (which the gov't can't seem to fix in medicare).
    Concentrate on the economy to restore jobs, and that needs to be done by reducing taxes so businesses can hire. It will not help to give 'stimulus' and unemployment and keep hitting us (the taxpayers). We had to work hard to get where we are at, and we think every able bodied person should do that also.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:40 pm |
  49. Alex from Brooklyn

    Absolutely. Never before have I witnessed a more disgusting display of political bribery, favoritism, and bullying that has taken place in the Senate in the months leading to the vote on the Obamacare bill. Buying votes? Check. Bullying of opposition? Check. Disregard for public opinion? You guessed it, check again! This is outrageous. Is this the change we were promised? If this is it, then please, we've had enough. It is embarrasing to watch this kind of pathetic display, while the rest of the world is laughing at the mess our country has become. Please stop spending the money we don't have and putting our children in jeopardy!
    There is no need to completely overhaul a system which happens to deliver the most technologically advanced, competition-driven care to the public. By all means, trim the loose ends and tidy it up, but stop wasting the taxpayer's money.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:40 pm |
  50. Cliff Glover

    If health care reform doesn't pass, it will be the same old game: pharmaceuticals, lobbyists, and insurance companies being the winners and 37 million Americans being the losers. Medical costs will continue to rise, coverage will continue to be denied for pre-existing conditions, emergency rooms will continue to supply care that might have been avoided, and massive inefficiencies in a system with no standards of treatment, billing, or ethics will continue to bog down everyone with unnecessary paperwork while people die unnecessarily.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:40 pm |
  51. Cindy Merrill

    Can I ask you to do Seniors a favor? Please inform anyone in power who will listen and respond with something other than the usual form letter: Seniors are not happy. That "generous" one time $250 didn't buy much. Then there was talk about banning prescription drugs from Canada and gutting Medicare advantage-$500 Billion cut from Medicare/Medicaid to cut "waste", with no specific details. Obama gave a nice speech in Ohio today, but the only mention of seniors was the $250 stimulus he threw us- which barely bought 5 weeks worth of groceries. My husband is boiling mad, and he's not the only one. How about an increase in Meals on wheels for rural seniors? Another promise broken. The only time Washington DC gives a frig is when Election month comes up- or when somebody like Scott Brown disrupts their grandiose plans. Why am I angry? Our Snap food credit is not enough for two type2 diabetics to buy a month's worth of groceries: Dept. of "Human" Services ( I use human very loosely) only takes income into account even though low glycemic food costs more. Darn right, I'm angry.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:41 pm |
  52. Michael

    No. It is past time for waiting on health care. We have a serious problem here that needs some type of solution. It won't be perfect the first time but something must be done. 40 million without health care is Not ok. If the elderly have a problem with government run health care, then they should stand behind their decision and give up their Medicare/Medicaid. If the conservatives in gov't have a problem with "socialized" health care, then they should give up their government run health care plans instead of saying it is ok for them but not for the rest of Americans. What happened to caring about your fellow neighbor? Stop thinking about yourselves for a moment and do the right thing. If you can't do that, then I want to see you tell someone that they deserve to die on national TV.

    Minneapolis, MN

    January 22, 2010 at 6:41 pm |
  53. Jason Sutterfield

    I feel Washington has yet to even address the actual problem. In my mind we must reform or completely do away with Health Insurance Company's who add NO value to Americas health and continue to siphon off the majority of money spent on health care in this country. We should be paying doctors for how healthy their patients are as a group and not for perpetuating continued sickness by constantly prescribing pharmaceuticals for every situation. Pharmaceutical company's are the second problem this country has with it's health care when drug company's are putting new drugs on the market every day more all to be "profitable" and with little regard for the peoples well being. How about we clean up or municipal water supply's and food sources instead of the continual poisoning of our people.
    Jason Sutterfield
    Phoenix, AZ USA

    January 22, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  54. Calvin

    No, if we don't pass health care, we will have another financial mealtdown–from the insurance industry this time.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  55. Lynne in CA

    No, no and no again! Congress should NOT give up on the basics of health insurance reform but instead needs to focus on ending abusive practices within the industry, including tort reform. Too many Americans lost their insurance when they lost their jobs and costs associated with medical care continue to rise. If serious populist reforms are not made soon, America will end up with health care only for those wealthy enough to afford it.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  56. Kevin Allfrey

    I voted for Obama but I think he's way off base on this issue. The scope and cost of these programs is monumental with no real guarantees of cost savings.In addition it is apparent that there will be no real regulation of the insurance industry which by it's profit motives for shareholders cannot possibly deliver cost effective health care.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:42 pm |

    Yes. For now. People are too concerned about jobs and the economy overall. Big mistake by the administration not to correctly prioritize the needs of the people they serve.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  58. John Sedlak

    No! Everyone agrees there are problems with the current system that need to be fixed, now we need to put aside the politics and get something constructive accomplished.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  59. Karina

    With medical bills being the cause in a huge number of personal bankruptcy cases, how can this country afford to give up? It certainly can't be good for our already shaky banks, who are forced to write off debt.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  60. Mattison Brooks

    They should have given up on it since day one; they're not trying to pass it, their corporate sponsors in Big Pharmacy are.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  61. Greg from ultra liberal California

    Congress could get real Health Care reform if they wanted to listen to moderate America. Instead, both the Left and the Right continue to demonize and accomplish things only for their Special Interests (Unions and Drug Companies) We could make substantial progress through Tort Reform, elimination of Anti Trust exemptions and prevent denial based on pre-conditions. That alone would be a very positive step forward.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  62. Nick

    If you really want to show China how weak we are as a nation, keep listening to Republicans-the party of failure. I can't believe they call themselves Americans- a real American puts his country before his ideology.
    The highest ranking Republican-Rush Limbaugh- thinks natural disasters are caused by Liberal Voodoo. Don't listen to these morons! Health Care Reform is necessary and it's been necessary for decades. Are we Americans? Capable of accomplishing amazing feats? Or are we cowards, as the Republican party contends, unable to even pass a piece of legislature concerning pre-existing conditions?

    Republicans disgust me.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  63. Layne Alleman

    Jack, Except for giving themselves and all their friends raises, upping their own health care, and playing around with the "old pork barrel", what, EXACTLY, have they passed "for the good of the people"????? Layne A. Antioch, Il.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:44 pm |
  64. George Guadiane - Austerlitz, NY

    Did they REALLY want to pass one?
    The Corporatocracy wins by default. Doing nothing lets them keep doing the least for us at the highest price with lots of us left in the cold.
    Seriously, Democrats had everything – EVERYTHING they needed to get a bill passed, except will, cooperation and bigger campaign contributions from "We The People."
    There was nothing to stop them, nothing but themselves... And they found a way to fail us. They supported the Obama Presidential campaign, they (at least) gave lip service to the idea of Health Care Reform and CHOSE not to deliver – why???

    January 22, 2010 at 6:44 pm |
  65. Gwen

    Giving up on health care reform is a major blow to the middle class and small business, who are often the ones that suffer the most from a lack of options to get decent and affordable health insurance coverage. Although the Senate bill is certainly not perfect, in my opinion the House should pass it and move on to deal with other issues like the economy and jobs (which are both affected negatively by the lack of health care reform).

    January 22, 2010 at 6:44 pm |
  66. Johnnie c from Florida

    I think he should because they not going to pass it. The democrats has no backbone and the Republicans are going to knock it down anyway. dont wast time on it ,go for jobs only.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:44 pm |
  67. Alan

    (St. Louis, MO)

    Put butter and marmalade on it, it's toast. Go back and start over, listening to a broader base than either party seems to have ears for.

    Restrict denial of coverage for pre-existing conditions, especially for insured people who change from one plan/provider to another. But, at the same time, require that people be covered so they don't just dodge the costs until they're really sick and then sign up for coverage the day before they need surgery/treatment and drop it again when they recover from that crisis.

    The toughest nut is to figure out a reasonable way of financing universal coverage. Those of us with acceptable coverage don't want to get shoehorned into some government plan and don't want to bear an inordinate amound of the cost for everyone else.

    It won't be easy but the Democrat Party should learn from having twice failed in their attempts to enact radical changes to how the whole insurance system works. Start with the agreed-upon problems, fix those and move on to other pressing issues before Congress and the country.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  68. David

    Giving up....the new sprit of America

    January 22, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  69. Luke

    Interesting how 9 months ago, no one thought their health care plan was excellent. Many are uninsurable due to a "preexisting condition" or just the overall cost and lack of availability. Suddenly, everyone loves their health care and will be sorry when they realize what they will end up with. The Palins of the world will be able to take credit for derailing something that Richard Nixon had tried to implement. It is a shame that the opposition can tell us all the things they don't want but do not have any new ideas of their own. Remember, they had 8 years to address this and never did.
    Very sad.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  70. Dedrick from Portland

    What most of the public fails to understand is that not by not fixing health care we do not have a hope of a prayer's chance at fixing anything else tied to the economic condition. Duh. It pains me to see that most of our citizens will believe the crap that comes out in a commercial instead of doing the research for themselves. Think people... or should I say sheep?

    January 22, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  71. James in California

    If they do, it's a suicide mission and some of the DEMS arn't dumb enough to do it.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  72. Don

    Yes. It's the Jobs Stupid. Washington is in la-la land, as usual. How are you going to force out of work Americans to have mandatory health insurance if they have no money? Tax the hell out of the rest of the poor saps who have a job? None of it makes sense.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  73. Ron

    Yes. It's dead.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  74. Share Hawkins

    Whenever we "give up", "give in", or "just go along with", then we deserve whatever we get. Fight for what you believe in, even if you lose.
    Stockton, CA

    January 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  75. Joel

    Hell no! Congress needs to pass something to stop the insurance industry from screwing the public. I would have Congress locked up in small room with Republicans and Democrats pounding it out until they agree to something that is fair for all.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  76. Shirley McPherson

    Yes, press on with Health Care ram it down the GOP's throats, expend all political capital. The race in Mass. was not about Health Care is was about the politics. GOP tactics. Mass. is not a GOP state, and never will be. They have healthcare. Political pundits are wrong. it was about the GOP vs. Obama. American public wants and needs healtchare, don't believe the polls. The NFL polls and stats said San Diego would beat the Jets.

    Shirley from Houston, Texas

    January 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  77. Gerry

    Between now and November's congressional elections, nothing of substance will get done. Our two parties are so polarized as to be paralyzed!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  78. D'Ann Hernandez

    I don't think they should stop it but not make it a priority right now. The american people are confused, first they say they want it , now they say no we don't. I also think people are scared of change it is something that our coutry needs. The people call it big government also but we as americans have no problem taking gov. hand outs. Go figure!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:47 pm |
  79. Dick from Indiana

    All Congress has to do is offer Medicare or medicaid coverage to anyone who wants it at cost.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:47 pm |
  80. Lynn, Columbia, Mo.

    When the going gets tough, the tough get going. I think they should press on and do it right. Let the Republicans fillibuster all they want and then pass a good bill that their base wants and needs.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:48 pm |
  81. Mary

    No I do not think that the health care reform bill is something to give up on. There are many families who need this in order to maintain a healthy family as well as a healthy mind. Yes I will agree that there are other matters that also need to be dealt with, like the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. But the wars that we are in are not going to be resolved for a long while. We need a healthy strong country to resolve these wars. Handling the health care crisis sooner than later will allow our country to maintain what we live for and that is equal opportunities and democracy for all.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  82. Adam Elias

    A majority of Americans will never think reforming health care is the top priority until a majority of Americans are sick or dying. We are a society of "now," and that makes it difficult for us to understand that failure to reform health care will affect every single one of us, as well as our children, eventually. Our economy may be weak, but our health care system is on its deathbed.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  83. Brett Tinder

    Absolutely not. I'm one of the millions of Americans who don't have insurance but would under the Senate healthcare bill. The public's mistrust of the bill is very similar to that of social security and medicare when they were passed.

    Retreating on healthcare reform would be bad politically for the Democratic Party and disastrous for the American people.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  84. Overby from Melbourne

    I learned the hard way that the US definitely needs health reform...I lost my health cov'g around 2000 or so, but I was able to sign up with the VA and had pretty good care and was basically happy. But in 2004 I had a massive heart attack and was taken to a regular civilian hospital, but was too ill to be taken to a VA hospital. I required a five way bypass open heart surgery at a cost of over $250,000 for eleven days in intensive care. The VA paid about $500 total, saying that since I had not had the surgery at a VA facility there was no coverage, leaving me with the rest uncovered by anybody, and we had to sell our family business of 20+ years. As much as I know we need health reform, there is no way I'd want the completely irresponsible and tragically expensive plan the Democrats came up with. I'd never heard of Scott whatisname in Boston, but the US public really needs to thank him for being in the right place at the right time.....

    January 22, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  85. John B

    They should do it in steps. Additionally, they should take away your authorization to write your left-wing articles. Should we address you as "Comrade Jack"?

    January 22, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  86. dj

    How many of those that were polled understand what is being proposed? It is understandable why there is such a strong lobby against reform.. there are a lot of special interests that stand to lose significant money – insurance, tort lawyers, pharmaceuticals, HMOs, doctors, and the high-income people that will be taxed more heavily. The government must look after the interests of the people it serves. It must ensure that health care costs are contained and adequate service is provided, particularly given the shrinking middle class.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  87. Mark Habermeyer


    If the democrats continue to insist on passing health-care legislation "no matter what", they will be committing political suicide in November. Their leaders (Reed and Pelosi) just don't get it!! The people of this country don't want the "change" President Obama is delivering!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  88. Richard from Colchester, CT

    I belong to the 32% that believe that health care reform should be the top priority and I think the remaining 68% lost their minds. Maybe once they get kicked off their insurance when they get sick or find out that they have to pay 20% of their cancer treatment, they will change their minds...

    January 22, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  89. Roger

    No, give up on Cafferty. It's about time for you to follow your brethren and head to Fox.... or retire. If you can't offer some constructive alternatives to everything you criticize, then you truly reduce yourself the lowest common denominator... but then again, maybe that's where your demo resides

    January 22, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  90. Richard, Kankakee, IL.

    No just pass single payer, put all the laws in place that protect the people, have us all pay 3 to 5% more in taxes to all be fully covered for Medical, Dental and Optical care, and then we do not pay anything else when we go into the hospital from now on! Then leave it alone, it is not the job of congress to get into every procedure that happens in our hospitals!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:50 pm |
  91. Patrick

    Pass the Senate Bill. Let history be the judge. You're not elected to try and get re-elected, you're elected to improve things for the population no matter how hard it is. That's why you volunteered to run for office.

    This is the last chance. Republicans are definitely not going to work with Dems to pass meaningful reform now that they perceive their obstruction as paying off in dividends with new votes.

    You can't just pass the parts of the bill everyone agrees on either because that will make things worse. If sick people can't be denied coverage, but healthy people don't have to buy coverage then our premiums will sky rocket even more.

    When 30 million people are newly insured and the deficit is lowered 81 billion because of the bill, people will look back on this as a success. Now the people that voted for it will probably take a huge hit immediately, but they'll be doing good for the people.

    Or you know what, don't pass it. Wait for things to get ubearably unaffordable for more and more people while witnessing the insurance companies turn a profit on it. Then the people will demand even stronger reform and we'll end up with a single payer system. That oughta get your tea boiling.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:50 pm |
  92. Rob

    Let's not pick and choose which public opinion polls we're going to take as "valid." Opponents of health care reform conveniently ignored opinion polls that showed a majority of Americans supported some kind of public option.

    The health care system in this country is broken, its costs are debilitating to individuals, business and government, and its shredded safety net is costing the lives of many of our most vulnerable citizens. It would be irresponsible of any government or political party not to try to fix it.


    January 22, 2010 at 6:50 pm |
  93. Tom Waldrop, Vienna, Virginia

    Jack, will Obama ever get it...that the majority of Americans don't want his health care reform, and his wild swing to the left of center? Virginia teased him, New Jersey surprised him, and now Massachusetts numbed him. Still he doesn;t get it, he really doesn't get it. Wake up Obama, and listen to what ordinary Americans are telling you.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:51 pm |
  94. FakeName

    The problem with the bill that Obama/Reid/Pelosi have been trying to pass is that it gets everything about health care completely 180 degrees wrong. If they'd had a bill that would have actually helped, it would have sailed through with huge bipartisan support.

    Such a real-world workable helpful bill would shift the tax break for health insurance from the employer to the employee so that in order to buy insurance individuals would join pools that have nothing to do with employers and presto, their insurance is magically portable! Pools could be started by credit unions, professional organizations (some have this already), non-profits, or completely ad hoc. No need for government at any level to create a pool once all individuals would be looking for pools; it would be too big a market for potential providers to pass up.

    Such a bill would cap malpractice awards for non-economic losses such as "pain and suffering" to some reasonable level; something like $250,000 or maybe even as high as $1,000,000 (indexed for inflation), but not essentially infinite as it is today. Such a bill would allow insurance companies to compete across state lines. Such a bill would encourage individuals to reduce their policies to only what they can't shop around for and cover out of pocket, i.e. catastrophic care, perhaps by offering the tax benefit only for that part of coverage. Theses changes would bring prices for medical services and goods down considerably and make it more affordable for all.

    Why is this so hard? Because government by its inherent nature doesn't want to solve problems, it wants to accrete power. And far far too many people want to be nannied their entire lives rather than primarily take responsibility for themselves.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:51 pm |
  95. James Gullett

    The insurance industry, drug companies and doctors have finally won. Congress stalled and stalled and finally the negative often blatant lies that the GOP and the health care industry were pushing swayed public opinion and now the people will get nothing and the insurance companies will still deny claims and let people die and the only people who will be able to afford the world class care will be the rich. How can we seriously call our health care system the best in the world when a baby born in Detroit has less chance to survive than one in COMMUNIST CUBA. A government for special interests by the lobbiests and against the people.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:51 pm |
  96. Scott Walker, TN

    First they're criticized for moving too fast then they're criticized for doing nothing all year. Which is it, America?

    January 22, 2010 at 6:52 pm |
  97. Mike from Conway SC, former New Yorker

    The american people see that the democrates having meetings behind closed doors and this scares them because it means that only one side is making the laws and this is not what this country is founded upon. Heath care needs to take a back seat to the economy, current regulation inforcement, and both wars. Once these are under control heath care can be revisted with both parties at the table. Taking on more then you can chew will choke you. Bush had Iraq and Obama now has heath care. I would like to see afordable heath care and maybe those who do not have insurance could buy into the goverment heath care program that our politicans have. What the problem with this?

    January 22, 2010 at 6:52 pm |
  98. ron

    Congress should move forward with the health care bill. Republicans should cooperate in trying to put together the best bill to address the needs of the American people, and stop playing obstructionist politics.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:52 pm |
  99. John Hix

    Congress has made great efforts toward a health care bill and has learned during this process what America wants. What is presented is not what is wanted. Put it on the shelf for now and get busy making jobs and getting this country out of the two wars we are stuck in. The financial mess is the priority although we kind of live behind rose colored glasses here in Dallas, Texas

    January 22, 2010 at 6:52 pm |
  100. Brian

    I don't think Congress should give up - in a general sense. I'm not sure about this current legislation though, because like most I feel this has been done sort of in the dark and what there is, is a unfathomable mess. Personally, I'm all for a Canadian-like system. I have friends in Canada - ranging from 40-80 - who are very pleased. Let's get right. But 'right' probably depends upon who you talk to!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:53 pm |
  101. Ted, Aloha, OR

    No, just simplify it.
    The problem with congress is attempting to satisify the thousands of minor wrenches in the works. Too darn complicated. The majority party it seems find it impossible to say, "Be reasonable, do it our way". The GOP never has that problem, they jam healthcare stuff down our throats via our wallets.
    Congress really only has 4 charges.
    Make it available to everyone at an affordable cost
    No dollar cutoffs due to using it too much, (some people just need more care).
    Guaranteeing no cancelation for any reason, and
    Drop the Medicare age to 50.
    Or is that too easy?

    January 22, 2010 at 6:53 pm |
  102. Larry Jones

    Is this a trick question? Should you give up smoking after a heart attack-onlyif you want to live.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:53 pm |
  103. Ed in Alaska

    Health care reform legislation really does need to take place in chunks as separate bills. There are several areas that all sides (yes, Republicans too) agree on which should be accomplished first.

    President Obama wants to curtail big banks, but big bills should also be curtailed.

    Finally, Congress needs to listen and act intelligently and openly.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:53 pm |
  104. Keith in Rhode Island

    It is astonishing to me that health care is so easily dismissed by so many as unimportant. Those who hold that view are always those WITH health insurance. As one of the wealthiest nations on earth, we should be ashamed that we don't provide care for ALL citizens of this great nation.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:53 pm |
  105. Chela

    Absolutely not! The Democrats have an 18-seat majority in the Senate, the largest majority since 1923. And it only takes 51 Senators for reconcilliation.

    Full speed ahead on health care reform!

    Beaverton, Oregon

    January 22, 2010 at 6:53 pm |
  106. Jim Jennings

    I think they should give up on health care. Who needs it! I intend to send all my medical bills to Senator Brown.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:53 pm |
  107. Jan B.


    No way should they give up now! It's fine for Masschusetts to say "I got mine, screw you!" but there are millions of Americans who can't afford insurance and hundreds of thousands going bankrupt because of their medical bills. It's an incredibly complex, difficult issue - and no one will get something for nothing, meaning that the benefits must be paid for. But that's why we elected our representatives - to stop saving their own hides and make difficult decisions for the benefit of all.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  108. Ann

    Jack, no this country shouldn't give up on a health care bill. We have come so far, and it would be just another sign that Democracy doesn't work if we turn back now. Muslim nations are laughing at us every moment we drag our rhetorical feet, and should be one more reason for just a few Republicans to act now for the love of our country and its' inhabitants.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  109. Danny from Alabama

    Democrats should find mew leadership. Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi do not represent main stream Americans. Democrats need to find a Blue Dog Democrat to lead the Party.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  110. Laurel Gilligan

    NO!! The need is still there! The job is not done!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  111. angelita

    Healthcare should still be a major priority. We have to stop living in a fantasy world where our healthcare is tied to our jobs. Jobs with benefits are an endangered species. A system has to exist where individuals have the same negotiating clout as group plans. Job creation that is meaning will come in due time from industries that don't exist currently or are in their infancy. So this is the perfect time to straighten out the healthcare industry and banking and investment world in preparation for a freelance workforce. Making it easier for people to take control of their family health care budgets and retirement planning.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  112. eva

    No healthcare reform is vital to this country. We need it. We need to get this accomplished, people need decent insurance. Insurance companies need to be reeled in. If anything happens to my job, or my husband's we would not be able to have insurance. And there are family members in my family that will not be able to get insurance because of the pre existing conditions.
    The reform the president wants is not going to hurt us, and with the savings it will pay for itself.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  113. A. Arnold

    Congress should NOT be trying to cram a health care bill down our throats which will end up costing us more money and result in a lesser grade of health care. If you were a doctor, would YOU be infavor of this mess Congress is pushing. I am sick to death of people running around whining because they don't have and think they can't afford health care when they have a 52" TV, blackberry, cable with all the available chanels, cell phones with all the latest gadgets and puffing a cigarette! People, obtain the most important thing first (health care and food for your family), then get the extras and don't expect me to pay for your health care–I pay my own!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:55 pm |
  114. JP Murphy

    Yes, in its current form – socialism is a failed experiement, worldwide. Side deals to ensure the votes are there disgusts me. From a "process view" – the primary care physicians are incented to recommend additional tests to; 1. protect themselves from litigation and 2. to generate revenue, while the insurance companies are incented to control the costs of these same tests to preserve their profit margin. Therefore you have providers and insurers working at odds with the proper objective of keeping the individual healthy. So you have one group, the providers, incented to increase the consumption of services vs the insurers incented to drive the consumption of services (costs) down. No where in the equation does one see the the overriding objective of keeping individuals healthy, thereby driving down the consumption of services, reducing costs and "bending the curve".
    Go figure, politicians, with no business/market experience legislating cost reduction through the restriction of services.....
    Throw all the idiots out!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:55 pm |
  115. Jennifer Leight

    I hope it doesn't pass. I can't afford health insurance, so I will have to pay a fine because I can't afford health insurance? Where is the logic in that?

    Pleasant Valley, NY

    January 22, 2010 at 6:55 pm |
  116. Joel

    Absolutely not! Congress has worked on this bill for year and needs to pass something that is reasonable and does not cost a fortune. The main issue is to stop insurance abuses that has harmed the public.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:55 pm |
  117. Richard, Kankakee, IL.

    No just pass single payer, put all the laws in place that protect the people, have us all pay 3 to 5% more in taxes to all be fully covered for Medical, Dental and Optical care, and then we do not pay anything else when we go into the hospital from now on! Then leave it alone, it is not the job of congress to get into every procedure that happens in our hospitals! Next get rid of all insurance companies we do not need them as middle men, denying us care when we need it the most. Finally get rid of Medic-care there is no need to have separate care systems one system for all, but all are fully covered! there is no need for any American to pay out of pocket when we pay so much more in taxes then any other nations!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:55 pm |
  118. Chela

    One state chosing one Senator from the Republican Party is absolutely no reason for President Obama and the Democratically-controlled Congress and Senate to abandon their agenda.

    Health care reform is needed now, in part because we know that the Republicans have no ideas on how to fix the health care crisis. The Republican answer is to just ignore the problems of average Americans and coddle the rich – been there, done that.

    Health care reform NOW!

    Beaverton, Oregon

    January 22, 2010 at 6:56 pm |
  119. Michael Mixon

    I am a Democrat and feel that the economy and jobs should have been the first priority. After the economy and jobs stabilized then take on health care. As far as bipartisan support, the Republicans never had any plan about anything concerning the economy or health care because they like just as it is. The I have mine so that is your problem mentality. Michael

    January 22, 2010 at 6:56 pm |
  120. Jon

    Absolutely congress should abandon this attempt at health care reform. Their are logical reforms that could be made and would not increase taxes or infringe on personal liberties and for some reason those reforms are not mentioned in either the house or the senate version of the bill.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:57 pm |
  121. Darrell

    Giving up at this moment in time would be an atrocity. When Rosa Parks got on that bus staring civil-rights down in front of her, she didn't relent did she?. When Nelson Mandela sat in that small cell for many years and contemplated his peoples future, he didn't waver did he?. We need our current leaders to pull us through these momentous times with the same courage that many have shown us in past history.–Darrell–Louisville, Ky

    January 22, 2010 at 6:57 pm |
  122. Linda - NJ

    No, Jack they should not stop trying to pass a health care bill. The dems have got to stop being job scared and do the right thing for a change. They are so afraid of the loud voices of the right-wing bullies that they allowed the entire process to be railroaded by the insurance industries. It is time to get a back bone and our President has got to stop explaining why this is important in high-handed words – speak to the people as if he were speaking to a sixth grade math class and hopefully people will understand how vital this is to not only people's health but to overall economic stability.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:58 pm |
  123. Stacey

    Yes, I'm tired of Congress speeding through passing bills. They sped through approving the bank bailout and look how that turned out. You don't just slap something together when it comes to health care, and that's what Congress has been doing. When they can come up with a reform that actually has a chance at working, then they should pass the bill.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:58 pm |
  124. Sean S.

    Congress should definitely give up trying to pass health reform now, what with the new campaign finance ruling from the Supreme Court and all. Our politicians need the time to carefully and properly auction their votes off to the highest special interest bidders. We wouldn't want policy making to get in the way!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:58 pm |
  125. Kman

    They should give up on this one and move on to something more important. If they do decide to go forward on trying to pass health care, our elected officials should be required to take part in whatever they come up with – only then could we be guaranteed the plan was good. Right now they have a Cadillac plan paid through our taxes – I want the same or better!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:58 pm |
  126. Fritz

    We are now faced with a problem so simple, it seems, that even the federal government could fix it. Wrong! All we need is for people to have some level of health insurance, be it some low-cal form like Medicaid or a Big Mac-style where you're satiated. I have a master's from a ivy league school, with the ability, and desire, to do many things. I have been unemployed since April 2010. While dredging through the morass of ehalthinsurance programs and Anthem health insurance, the premium costs were different: aren't they supposed to be the same? When ehealthinsurance.com gave me a quote, I could afford that and expected the same from Anthem. Well, Anthem was ~100.00 more expensive. And this is only for my wife and kids – I don't even qualify for insurance because of a "pre-existing condition". Talk about wanting to really hurt some one? Really badly? I sat back and thought how lucky I was that if worse came to worse, I could afford these premiums, however briefly, until my insurance runs out. I have one child in college and a senior in high school. My wife's in perfect health. I thought of the people who can't afford these ridiculous payments, can't navigate the insurance system (who seem to be a cracker jack think tank). So I'm applying to the local VA for care (if needed).....great way to prepare for retirement., huh? How sad, we, as a nation, can't, or WON'T, care for those who need it most. My son is on Adderall. Thank god there is a generic: 30 pills for $145.00. He benefits from them, so I don't eat out for a few weeks with my wife. This government better get their act and their priorities together soon because I am only one voice, and I hear a whole lotta screaming all around me. You bet they need to pass this law in some fashion or things are going to be pretty dark for quite awhile.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:59 pm |
  127. Charlie Seemann

    Absolutely not. We can't let the neanderthal obstructionists prevent us from providing health care for all Americans. It's time for the Democrats we elected to do this to get it done, whatever it takes.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:59 pm |
  128. Bryan G. Laura, M.D.

    Hey Jack,

    Wait until March 1st when doctors get a 21% pay rate cut from medicare and providers are no longer willing or able to provide care to millions of medicare recipients. If you live in Glendale, AZ. and use the Mayo Clinic this has already happened prior to the rate cut. Let's see how fast our legislators can regroup after a 6 week breather.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:59 pm |
  129. Rob Buell

    Congress hasn't tried to reform health care yet. All they've done is try to dictate what insurance companies can't do.

    Perhaps Congress should tackle why health insurance companies in this country are having to pay $200 for an aspirin or $25,000 to remove a pesky hang nail?

    And this "bottomless coverage" idea is absurd! Go live up every insurance policy you have and show me one that doesn't have some kind of coverage limit!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:59 pm |
  130. James M. Russell

    I have Medicare and a Medicare supplementary policy. So I have no self interest in wanting some kind of healthcare bill passed. But it is the decent thing to do. If 45 million plus Americans lack health care insurance of any kind, there is an urgent need to do something. Republicans do not have any ideas to address that problem.Those who don't represent an uncivilized and barbaric mentality should repel any fair-minded American.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:59 pm |
  131. Bill Osler

    The American people are confused.

    I don't think it's possible to pass any kind of complex social legislation at this time. There has been so much mud thrown, most of it completely false, that everybody has at least one thing they're worried about with this legislation.

    What needs to happen instead is to break the bill into smaller pieces, and pursue each one individually. Then, let the obstructionists and the Tea Partiers explain why they are opposed to things like letting people buy into Medicare at a fair price, or eliminating some of the excesses of private insurance companies. That way, everyone can see what's really going on, and maybe we'll regain our sanity.

    January 22, 2010 at 6:59 pm |
  132. johnny JG

    Yes, it is a joke. You can walk into any hospital and get free health care now if you cannot afford it. In CA I believe it is called medical. Dems must quit protecting the Insurance Companies and let anyone from any state to buy insurance from any state. That is what the Reps want to do. No more protection, just competition

    January 22, 2010 at 7:00 pm |
  133. Bryan G. Laura, M.D.

    Hey Jack,

    Wait until March 1st when doctors get a 21% pay rate cut from medicare and providers are no longer willing or able to provide care to millions of medicare recipients. If you live in Glendale, AZ. and use the Mayo Clinic this has already happened prior to the rate cut. Let's see how fast our legislators can regroup after a 6 week breather.

    Evansville, Indiana

    January 22, 2010 at 7:01 pm |
  134. Kim in Dodge City, KS

    Congress should give up pretending to be a meaningful, compassionate, relevant or intelligent body of lawmakers capable of producing legislation that is beneficial to the citizenry. Let's be honest here, the only thing they are ever good at passing are raises for themselves and laws that benefit lobbyists and special interests. This isn't just about health care reform.This is about their total lack of competence to carry out the duties they have sworn an oath to perform.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:02 pm |
  135. Guy from Hawaii

    Yes...and then go straight for Across the Board Government run and paid for (with taxes) Health Care and it should be decided by a National Public Vote not any elected officials in Washington with an agenda or a Phizer Bumper Sticker on their car. Don't raise taxes...re-appropriate and stop spending our money on Bull S-t, fear based agendas like "National Security" by trying to bomb a bunch of bearded fellas hiding in caves in Afghanistan!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:02 pm |
  136. John f. Johnston

    Maybe we better dump out this tankard nearly every senator and congressman has peed in it! The Democrats should just pack up and go home, suck their thumbs and wax philosophic on how wonderful it could have been. Where in the hell is any sense of cooperation? First, they start by giving the farm away to the Republicans to get them to a table they refused to attend..then they made endless concessions to the health care lobby...next they grabbed everything they could for themselves while ignoring the primary goal to extend affordable health care to most of the public. They sent a garbled message and were left to their own selfish devices by the man who could have been the most powerful president in history. The President sent weak mixed messages and provided little leadership.
    I am through with them all. My answer to should the health care bill be continued?
    Nope! What will I do? I'm going to go over to the Republican table of "EVERLASTING NO". There, I can count on unity of purpose...and should I magically become wealthy...I'll actually be able to sit at the table instead of merely watching from the sidelines.
    From my Heart,

    January 22, 2010 at 7:03 pm |
  137. Lawrence

    Once again we decide by not deciding and our government does what the corporations want. I'm surprised at all these right wingers who view the recent SCOTUS ruling as a victory for free speech. Yesterday's ruling was the end of our democracy. It was judicial activism at its worst. You think it's bad now just wait. We're now a country of by and for the corporations, the people be damned.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:04 pm |
  138. christopher Christian

    Yes, ah no, maybe I just wish I could understand the health care bill, but does anybody? I want what best for my family but who is the true expert. Can someone explain to me honestly!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:04 pm |
  139. Brandon

    We can't afford to have them give up on health care. Reconvene, start over, whatever - but it's too big of a mess to completely walk away. It's like asking if we should give up when fighting cancer. Heck no!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:04 pm |
  140. John Smith

    "Congress" should not be one-party rule. The Republicans have a lot to offer on this issue, but to include their proposals would require the Democrats to compromise, which they refuse to do. Tort reform and the marketing of insurance policies across state lines are excellent ideas and ought to be included. However, if "health reform" is, in reality, code for socialist-style big government, I prefer the current mess.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:05 pm |
  141. Johnny DC

    They should, unless they're aspiring to be martyrs. Hopefully Congress recognizes that this is America, where martyrdom isn't a celebrated attribute.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:05 pm |
  142. christopher Christian

    Yes, ah no, maybe I just wish I could understand the health care bill, but does anybody? I want what best for my family but who is the true expert. Can someone explain to me honestly!

    Chris Christian
    Yukon, Oklahoma

    January 22, 2010 at 7:06 pm |
  143. Jim - Michigan

    They should give up trying to create yet another entitlement that tax payers have to fund. Eliminate the 800 billion dollars wasted annually in health care, then extend benefits, but eliminate the insurance and make it a national single payer system. Paying for health care should come from an overall, general sales tax that way EVERYBODY pays their share, not just tax payers.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:07 pm |
  144. Margo M - Missouri

    No. We shouldn't give up on healthcare. My husband was forced to retire so he could continue to carry health coverage. His company sent out a letter in June 2009... if you don't retire by August 2009 medical coverage will no longer be available for retirees.... His company also changed the formula and we pay 650.00 a month for the same insurance we were paying 240.00 a month before retirement. He was to young to retire but because of a preexsting condition/disease we could not find insurance we could afford. So we are living on 2/3 less money and more than double health care costs. Something has to be done.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:07 pm |
  145. Charles from Austin Tx

    Yes Jack, let this power grabbing bag of socialistic contol slide off into the garbage heap where they began stuffing it to it's overflowing brim. A veritable Blivit... that's three pounds of manure stuffed into a two pound sack, then placed on your door step and set on fire! Once you step on it to put out the fire, there's just no getting around the consequences. So put a stop to it' before it's delivered. The private sector will develope lower cost "catastrophic" policies that people can better afford. Then they won't be going to the doctor every time they sneeze or form a gas pocket because they will have to pay cash most of the time. Prices will begin to drop because doctors and hospitals will be a whole lot less busy. Bye the way, you may not remember the doctor stikes in Canada and Israel about 20 years ago, but when they happened the death rate went DOWN in those countries. To quote Bill Murray in the movie Stripes..."that's a fact Jack". Emergency rooms would be a great place to identify illegal aliens and have them arrested and deported...they would get a lot less busy too, again allowing for prices to come down for the legals.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:08 pm |
  146. Russell Marooney

    It is like the elephant in the house that needs to be eaten. One bite at a time will get it done, not trying to jam it all down at one time

    January 22, 2010 at 7:08 pm |
  147. A.J.


    We could give up on healthcare. But the politicians who share that news with a smile on their face to their consituents making over $500K a year and without a care in the world, ought to be the same to break the news to that middle-class American family of 4 without any options should anyone in their family get sick. And it should all be televised.

    As a native Bay-stater, I can tell you that Massachusetts has never served as a microcosmic barometer for America's political sway. While the outcome in that state has been pathetic and a failure of leadership in so many ways for the Democratic party, the notion that it should dissaude this cause from moving forward is just as illogical and improbable as a former nude model Massachusetts Republican winning the vacated Kennedy Senate seat. If the Dems think Massachusetts was bad, should they elect to cease this fight, just wait until the next congressional elections.


    Atlanta, GA

    January 22, 2010 at 7:08 pm |
  148. Dixie Reynolds

    Congress should keep trying to pass health care with the government option but it should not be mandatory that you buy it. When it is priced so people can afford it they will buy it but the government (our congress) is out of touch with the average persons expenses.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:09 pm |
  149. Wayne Lewis

    America should move forward with health care reform. We as a nation are the only western society that doesn't protect it's most valuable asset - it's citizens. Health care, along with higher education, should be available to all Americans – rich and poor – and without financial burden. Otherwise, we will again learn from history, that without these kinds of basic human rights most will suffer oppression under a social tyranny. If we as a society are going to err, we need to err on the side of humanity, not a corporation. When will we ever learn?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:09 pm |
  150. Mike in SA

    Here's an idea. How about really making it about health care reform and not political paybacks and back room deals with your buddies. Even better, we could televise the whole thing on CSPAN or something so the public will know what is being added (like tax exemptions only for union members) and what is being rejected (like not allowing purchase over state lines, tort reform, etc.) and why it is being added or rejected. Kind of like it's out in the open.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:09 pm |
  151. Betty Yocum

    No congress should not give up on health care reform. Both parties need to work together. There are things that both parties agree on. Why can't they at least get those things passed? Take away healthcare from all the politicians! I bet we'd get something done real soon.

    Look at the big picture. Healthcare is the reason why many employers do not want to hire full time workers.

    Yes jobs should be the #1 issue, but healthcare is part of that.
    Many places have a freeze on hiring full times employees. They only will hire part -time . This way they don't have to pay out benefits.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:09 pm |
  152. Bill Wirt


    The current legislation is flawed and here is why: all the reform is focused on the INSURANCE side of the equation. Whatever happened to the COST OF TREATMENT? If we reform and/or regulate what providers are charging for simple, moderate and complex treatment issues, we may see there is no need to reform the INSURANCE side of the equation called health care. I myself am tired of paying $300 for 2 aspirin during an emergency room visit some years ago so it is my position that the COST OF TREATMENT needs some serious attention in order to make health care INSURANCE affordable for all Americans. Oh...I haven't had health insurance in over 16 years because it's too expensive and doesn't deliver the coverage I feel warrants the cost.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:09 pm |
  153. Pete

    Only 50% straw man, I'd be impressed if it wasn't so convenient. Only 39% want the SENATE bill passed. Yep, it's a pile of pork. I'm a solid Democrat and I agree that that bill is a dog.

    Now, the house bill – nice dodge, there, Cafferty. That alone, with no spectre of the crappy Senate bill – that one over 65% of the people want.

    The Democrats in the Senate turned a decent bill into crap trying to appease Baucus, Lieberman and Snowe (getting 2 out of 3 and the 60 they needed without reconciliation). The two Dems were in the back pocket of the Insurance Companies, and Snowe had her reasons for nixing her vote. She's one of the few decent Republicans out there, so I won't dog her. I'm sure her reasons were based on principles, even if I don't share them.

    The big question now is do they go for the scaled back version, or do they go for reconciliation? Giving up isn't really on the table, unless your table is filled with Neocon pipe dreams. (hey, Jack! Pass the Cheney in 2012!!!)

    I vote for reconciliation and the House bill pretty much untouched. Just like most of America.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:09 pm |
  154. Rob

    Not give up, but probably try a more rational bi-partisan approach. They basically tried to cram something down the public throat which a lot of people didn't want. I don't think the end bill really met the origianl goals and they should take their time to get something less expensive and more robust.
    I really support a public option, but while paranoia with the talk of Death Councils lingers it'll never happen.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:10 pm |
  155. Kevin R. in Western Mass.

    Don't give up, but "reset." It's a good time to stop trying to fiddle with current system, just so that current insureds feel safe that they won't lose what they now have. We're going to lose it sooner or later anyway, probably sooner. Design new plan for the future that is cost-efficient, medically effective, and encourages medical advances. Swallow some pride and get the Republicans involved as part of the solution. We still need to crack this nut.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:11 pm |
  156. Nathan Hoover

    Dems should absolutely press forward with the health care bill they have and then aggressively work to improve it later. Dems need to stop being cowards and lead for a change. If Republicans had a bill set up they would not let waning public opinion or a single predictable election loss stop them from doing what their constituents had sent them to do. If Dems dont get this done they deserve what they get in 2010.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:11 pm |
  157. Shawn

    No. I think Congress should continue to pursue health care. Eight years of the Bush Administration, two wars, bank bailouts, an economic downturn, home foreclosures, and yes, 10% unemployment. Don't you think it's about time that the people got 'something' back. Just a shame there in no public option though.

    Hamilton, Ontario

    January 22, 2010 at 7:11 pm |
  158. Mike in St. Louis

    I'm a Republican with Independent leanings. No, Congress should not scrap healthcare, but they need to address the shortcomings in American Healthcare. There is no need to fix what works.

    We must plug the gaps and open up competition in insurance by getting rid of geographic restrictions, limit malpractice awards, prevent denials and exorbitant premiums due to preexisting conditions, provide bigger tax breaks to small business and individuals for all necessary health care expenditures as well as premiums with certain limits of course. As insurance companies get bigger with a larger percentage of the population as subscribers, they can negotiate better rates with physicians, hospitals and pharmacies to keep healthcare cost under control with fewer "write offs" from uninsured patients.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:12 pm |
  159. ken

    yes. they refused to give the american people what we wanted single payer, total coverage for ALL americans. instead they tried to force this "you have to sign up or pay a fine" crap and call that covering more people. mostly people that dont want to be covered. its a FREE country right? sounds more like a bought country. Anyway, if the majority cant have what it wants then screw the rest of em. drop the issue and get me a job.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:12 pm |
  160. Brandon in Alaska

    I thought they already did...

    January 22, 2010 at 7:12 pm |
  161. Chuck Coates

    Congress should not "give up." They, both Democrats, Republicans and Independents, need to get it together and work as a team and stop the bickering and finger pointing. I am afraid that this so called "reform" was doomed from the point the Democrat Leadership went behind closed doors and started making deals to get certain Senators on board.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:12 pm |
  162. Randy

    If that was the best bill that they could devise, then yes absolutely give it up, and never return to it. The cure proposed in this bill was worse than the disease. Taxing doctors, pharma companies, medical device providers, and health insurance policies does not make healthcare cheaper or improve access. Anyone with 3rd grade math skills can figure that one out. Too bad Congress isn't as bright as a 3rd grader.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:12 pm |
  163. Adam

    Certainly there are more important short term agenda items to be fixed such as unemployment and augmenting our national security procedures, but I can see no more important long term policy than to resolve healthcare. Without reform, 50 million people continue to use costly emergency rooms as their primary care physician – a fact that will stymie any chance at a sustainable, robust and debt free economy. Congress must act decisively and creatively (with the Massachusetts male model in attendance) to insure as many folks as possible. The future of our country's economy is in the balance.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:12 pm |
  164. Alec

    Congress should only stop working on health care reform if the American people suddenly become immune to sickness.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:13 pm |
  165. Sue

    The current Health Care Reform proposals should be shelved. Neither are any good and to pass one just for the sake of passing something to please the President is a bad deal all around. I don't think something this enormous should be passed by those who will never have to use it in any way. They have their own health care and could really care less how much this will cost the indivudual U.S. citizen or what coverage there will really be. Heck they even left in the fact that illegals will take part in it all at OUR expense. What happened to the President being called a liar over this? This really accentuates that he is a liar by allowing this. What ever happened to our reps representing US?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:13 pm |
  166. Steven, Novato, CA


    As an independent in dark blue California, I see this as a defining moment for the Democrats and Obama Adminstration to live up to the "bipartisan, transparent" approach to legislation that was promised by "Change We Can Believe In" but seems like an empty slogan today. If they choose to force health care through now, it will be at their peril in November and they deserve the drubbing they will receive. This is their only chance to reset and challenge Republicans to get on board and negotiate in good faith (or the Republicans will hurt their own cause in the Fall).

    Novato, CA

    January 22, 2010 at 7:13 pm |
  167. John

    No, they shouldn't give up. The problem will still be there and be more expensive the longer we wait to fix it....insurance premiums , prices on drugs, and price of care will all still go up. It is a national shame that we can not and do not take care of all of our fellow Americans.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  168. Mike W.

    No Jack they should not give up health care, what the dems should do is get all thier ducks in a row and get the job done. George W Bush did this with less of a majority and the democrats are capable of doing this as well if they can stop putting thier own agendas above the peoples. They also have to get the message about the good things this bill will do for americans and stop letting the conservative party shoot it down by clogging up the media pipes with ouright lies and fear mongering. It will be a good day in America when the health companies can no longer say, "You have cancer and we don't feel like paying for it, oh and by the way now you have a pre-existing condition so no one else is going to help you pay for it either." Jack, we already have deathpanels, the health insurance companies that we pay out of our own pockets every paycheck.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  169. Bob Elder

    A hiccup in the inertia should not stop the process. The Democrats should try to act on what is needed by the people and break away from all the money that is being thrown at them. Yesterday's Supreme action will take away even more of the "power" of the people. One could get discouraged by the inactivity of the President and the Congressional Democrats. It portends a long dry spell. Governance is not easy, but it is possible.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  170. Steve

    Why should they give up on something that is way over needed. I have openly complain about the monopoly that the Insurance Ind has in our country for years. And it seems they our willing to brake the bank in keeping it that way with the media blitz and sending people to town halls to disrupt them for there own purpose. I have run into to many people being misinformed about Health Care and listening to what is being lied about on Fox News. The Long Arm of the Republican Party

    January 22, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  171. Steve

    should government give up on healthcare "reform" bill? YES.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:15 pm |
  172. michael West copenhagen, Denmark

    Health care reform later? It's now or never. The money men who bribe, corrupt and milk the system will only get stronger with the passage of time and the draining of the reformers' strength and influence. As they once said of the Germans, The Republicans are either at your feet or at your throat. They only thing they respect is merciless opposition and the will to total victory. Compromise for them is a sissy liberal word.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:15 pm |
  173. Tim

    They should give up trying to pass the current legislation and try to pass simple effective reforms one at a time. Instead of lumping everything into one giant bill they should individually pass bills covering topics that have bipartisan support such as not allowing denial for pre-existing conditions, malpractice suit reform and others. Let the ideas stand on their own merits as opposed to underhandedly passing laws with countless pork and pet projects nestled inside.

    Tim, Berkeley CA

    January 22, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  174. michael West copenhagen, Denmark

    Health care reform later? It's now or never. The money men who bribe, corrupt and milk the system will only get stronger with the passage of time and the draining of the reformers' strength and influence. As they once said of the Germans, The Republicans are either at your feet or at your throat. They only thing they respect is merciless opposition and the will to total victory. Compromise for them is a sissy liberal word.

    copenhagen, denmark

    January 22, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  175. Jim


    No, Congress should not give up on healthcare. That said, Congress should give up making this a single party ram down our throats resolve. The congressional kiddies need to return to their sandbox and figure out a way to get along in a collaborative manner. I like the word consensus and hope the intelligent (I use that term loosely) lawmakers should see how to reach such from both sides of the isle. They should focus on healthcare and the American citizens and not not their personal what can I get out of this deal.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  176. Michael

    Congress should give up passing the health care bill for now. It is a flawed document that is not addressing the real problems.

    1.The cost of health care in this country is so high because we have too many specialists and sub-specialists and not enough general practitioners. The specialists are able to charge roughly 2 1/2 times per encounter that a GP can. Also,

    2. We have too much lifestyle induced disease. Smoking, eating and drinking too much leads to very expensive end of life care. This is where many of our dollars go.

    3. In our current insurance system, young people are not in the system, which means that they are not sharing the load with the older sicker ones.

    Compounding the problem is the fact that nearly all Americans consider healthcare an entitlement. If an uninsured person does not have healthcare and gets very sick, they go the the ER, which is a very expensive means of treatment.

    We, the people, can solve the problem right now by demanding the congress go on Medicare instead of their own special govrnment insurance and by making Medicare mandatory if you have no other health insurance. That would be the easiest and probably least expensive solution at this time. The system will ultimately fail on its own if we do not repair it now.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  177. David, Tampa, Fl

    No Jack, we need health care reform in this country. What we need is a new method of doing things in Congress. Whichever party is in power behaves like a ruling elete with "it's my way or the highway attitude." The out of power party goes into an obstructionist mode and nothing gets done. The net affect is that I have seen a greater level of maturity from a roomful spoiled four year olds than the Congress of the United States. Both parties are to blame for the sorry state of affairs this country finds itself in. Politics as usual is why we need viable third parties with people willing to work together to achieve things like economic renewel, health care reform, and many other things that can't be realized because of the kind of people elected to Congress.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  178. David

    This is because the majority of the people in this country are only worried about their own situation and they have health care. They don't want to help the people who don't. And they don't understand that giving these people healthcare will actually reduce their own healthcare costs.

    Furthermore, most congressmen are getting campaign contributions and lobbying by health care companies, so they are not likely to support it either. They also only worry about their own situation and they ALL have healthcare.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  179. Ben from Cambridge, MA

    Jack, Congress should have open, televised, bipartisan discussions about what step to take next and pass a bill that both sides of the aisle can support. Isn't that how Congress is supposed to work? What a crazy idea.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  180. Robert

    I think the whole process is going in the wrong direction. Nothing I've seen in either plan does much to reduce health care costs. All it really does is make the insurance companies and hospitals rich at the expense of the taxpayer. Moves like tort reform and allowing insurance companies to cross state lines will do more for much less of the taxpayers money.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  181. Mobius

    Majorities in both Houses of Congress and they haven't passed anything yet. Our government is not only inept, it's become incompetent.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  182. ron

    The Democrats have done a terrible job of marketing their plan. Doing nothing leaves us to deal with the ultimate consequences, higher premiums, restricted benefits, as well as the cost of those uninsured.
    The proponents of the reform failed to tell the American people what the true cost is for those uninsured and under insured.
    When the premiums double again, how many of that are happy with our current coverage will be happy then. When jobs are lost where will new coverage come from
    When employers can't afford to contribute to employee health plans or pass on a greater portion of the cost, who will be able to afford proper coverage.
    Consider the current affect on salaries due to the employer cost of coverage.
    We need universal coverage without consideration of pre-existing conditions.
    We need some leadership with guts to do what's right, not just what is popular, and not just succumb to the lobbyists.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  183. Jeff

    NO! Any actions taken to try and salvage something meaningful from this mess would be disingenous and fraught with loopholes/ unintended consequencess-just like every other program they try to "manage". Truth be told, Jack, any issue that may negatively affect one's poltical capital (healthcare, immigration, campaign finance reform, trade, abuses by wall street, etcetera, will never, ever, see any meaningful reform. There's too much at stake...primarily, their job security and healthcare plans!!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  184. Ellen Rita

    The American People=you can lead the horses to water but you can't make them think=lagging health care reform.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  185. Sue from Redwood City

    They need to start over and put the public option back in to create competition for these greedy insurance companies. Obama spent way too much time trying to woo, the venemous, nasty right wing. They had no interest whatsoever in working together to accomplish anything, or in what was best for Joe citizen. They just wanted to tear down anything Obama did because they didn't win the election and used any means justifies the end mentality – hence Palin's death panels and such. Everyone knows there is no such thing. These insurance companies are the death panels, dropping people as soon as they get sick! No wonder the Republican party is dying! Decent people don't want to be associated with them.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  186. Aldrich Anderson

    Congress would be turning a deaf ear to those they represent should they pursue this bill further. It will do neither political party good, and distance Washington further away from the people. This could be construed as another blow to our democracy. And we've had enough of that, as we all know.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  187. Mary

    Yes, at this time. We need job creation really bad first. Health care does need to be reformed though. I had surgery and 1 hour in the operating room cost $1136 for just the room and that is with health insurance. Mary – Phoenix

    January 22, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  188. Guy Cannon

    At some point, congress has to get the message. The people they serve don't want this and are getting madder all the time that congress thinks it knows "what's good for us"

    January 22, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  189. Kent

    YES! GIVE UP! What do you think the majority of us have been telling pollsters for almost a year? I swear I hear the words "health care" 50 times a day. If this keeps up I'M going to need a doctor! This government needs to focus on JOBS, JOBS, and JOBS! Why won't anyone in Congress or at the White House listen to what average Americans are saying?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  190. Jeff Kew

    If Democrats had any spine, they wouldn't fall apart in reaction to day to day changes in polls and quirky results to a single special election. They were elected with a mandate to reform healthcare. They are on the 5 yard line and they are dropping the ball. They have 60 votes on the Senate bill. Just pass the thing. House Democrats may be scared of passing the bill, but, in reality, I think doing nothing will do more damage to their chances of re-election. Also, Obama should stop trying to please everyone, especially Republicans who have done nothing but try to trip him at every move. Get up President Obama and rouse the house Democrats into action – you have a gift with words – use that talent now to rally the troops and get healthcare passed! Then you can move on to the economy.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  191. Gilberto Rivera

    America needs health care reform, just not this health care reform. Congress needs to treat this issue with the delicate precision it deserves. Rushed legislation never got us anything good. It needs to be done, slowly, carefully, in small steps, with bi-partisan support. Pass tort reform, pass restriction on insurance companies, pass a limited public option for basic health care, avoid hot button issues like abortion and end of life decisions and just maintain the status quo on those.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:23 pm |
  192. Robert

    What made anyone seriously think real Health Care Reform could ever be passed in the Congress? Simply put, too many congressmen have been "bought" by insurance and drug companies which prevents the interests of "real Americans" from being considered by most Congressmen?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:24 pm |
  193. Rosalie in Forsyth County, Georgia

    I'd like to see Congress and the Obama administration do something really dramatic. Just announce that they hear the voice of the American electorate, so they are going to drop the present health care bill and focus on jobs and the economy.

    They could write a new and simplified bill that would require insurance companies to accept people with a prior extisting condition, remove the exemption from anti-trust laws and allow insurance companies to market products across state lines.

    If they did only that, I would consider this administration a huge success. But I'm not going to hold my breath.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:24 pm |
  194. jeane

    No because we will all need it in our life time.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:24 pm |
  195. James

    Republicans are the real life death panels. How many people will die this year because of lack of health coverage?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  196. Greg Garnant

    Nothing that has happened politically changes these facts: many millions of Americans don't have health insurance, health care costs are going up while health insurance companies are highly profitable, and health costs will bankrupt the country as they have many families within 20 years. The only way forward, avoiding these problems is to have a national health program that addresses these issues. The current plan addresses these issues to some extent and NO one that complains about it has offered a plan that even begins to address the issues. Are better plans possible? Probably, but I'd like to see one actually proposed as opposed to taking potshots at what is 'on the table'.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  197. Clayton Kelly

    We can't say we're among the greatest countries in the world as long as we're all one pink slip away from health related financial ruin or worse. The dems need to suck it up and pass something. This opportunity will not come again and the other side has proven they want to beat the dems more than they want to accomplish anything for the country.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  198. Donald B. McKenzie,PhD.

    Those of us who have decent, successful medical insurance would be
    willing to sacrifice 'something' for the uninsured,reasonable, but not
    what's now planned.Mine (a medicare advantage type) went up 60%.
    I can afford it, but thousands of others surely cannot. They will drop it
    or depend on gov't bailout. How will they get the healthy adults & minor-
    ity populations to enroll? Mandates,for whom? What specific "costs" are
    to be reduced? Major points/issues of House & Senate bills are not clear;
    those that appear to be incorporated are unreal, impossible,unreason-
    able. Lawyers, unions,& lobbyists will determine the ultimate legislation;
    certainly not Congress, nor the rhetorical,but inactive,indecisive Presid-

    January 22, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  199. sharon harris

    Yes, congress should pass healthcare, but the republicans will block it. They are completely serving the richest 1% of the population, and the hell with the majority of Americans. If they can't pass their bill, they can at least pass some cost controls. Here in New Jersey, hospitals inflate their bills many more times for the uninsured, and then negotiate down. My brother recived a 400,000.00 dollar hospital bill for a 30 day stay. The medicade reimbursment rate would be about 30,000.00. How is that fair? a decent start would be to pass a bill requiring medical providers to bill no more than 3 times the medicade reimbursement rate to the uninsured. Health insurance just provides one more layer, and profit on something that should morally be Not for Profit.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  200. Craig


    Healthcare reform as it should be is dead. The entire system needs an overhaul. What we have now is catering to all parties: the right, the healthcare industry, big business, and so on. Until we can start from scratch with the reform, healthcare will continue to be a burden on regular Americans.

    One last note- I should also mention that unless we remove our elected officials' healthcare plan, we will not see any reform. Why should our elected officials give a darn about regular people? They get healthcare for life as an elected official!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  201. Jake Smith

    Healthcare isn't about health or care; it's about greed and the bottom-line. Eventually, only the superrich (i.e., insurance providers, bankers, CEOs, etc.) will be able to afford it at all. Unfortunately, we're the ones that have made them superrich to begin with...

    January 22, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  202. Ron in Cartersville, Georgia

    It is amazing how Obama and friends are "all of a sudden" interested in jobs. Since they no longer can cram the health insurance down our throats, they now have to shove it up their own ### 's . They are simply trying regain the people's friendship from the damage caused by the health care debalce by "appearing" to care about jobs. They are so fake and everyone sees right thru it. The whole health care thing should be set aside until the economy is better, unemployment is lowered below 10%, we are more secure in our own country, and last but not least... until snowballs survive hell !!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  203. StevieT

    A solid majority could not get their number 1 priority accomplished. What do you think will happen to items 2, 3 and 4?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  204. jay

    Absolutely. This health reform was more about an ideological reform than health reform. Having to exempt states/unions/entities means it is the wrong direction. The reform needs to be focused on Tort reform so hospitals and doctors arent passing the costs of frivolous lawsuits onto the patients.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  205. Sharon

    No Jack, Congress should just get it right and stop acting like preschooler that are in the developing stage of "I want it MY WAY or
    I WANT play !! Both sides need to grow up and work together for the American people. Here's an idea give us the same insurance that Congress has.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  206. michael

    Yep Obamacare is dead and it just saved our country Trillions of dollars by not going through. The question should be when is Obama and Congress going to start creating jobs and turning around the economy ?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  207. Jim C

    Most working families devot more of their income to health care costs than they do to taxes, fuel for their cars and some, even their mortgage payment. Why do they choose to always whine about taxes.Health care and education costs rise much more than the general inflation rate and certianly much higher than your taxes rise , but conservatives keep whining about taxes. Why do they want to put the brakes on health care reform?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  208. Jay in Nashville

    The public wants action on jobs. The recovery at Wall Street is not being matched by a recovery on Main Street. The next time Congress tackles Healthcare Reform they need to do it in the open and do it in stages. The next time perhaps we will have leadership in the Senate and House. Reid & Pelosi don't provide leadership just gaffes.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  209. DeeDee

    People with half a brain know that the President took on health care and expended all this political capital for his close friend Ted Kennedy. But what he wasn't counting on is that people in his own party would be so short sighted and not stick together. So, I don't know if this Congress should take on healthcare because Congress doesn't have the leadership in the Republican or Democratic leadership to make it happen.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  210. stanley friedman

    Although many or most of us bemoan the fact that we are the only developed country without a national health insurance program and have 40 million citizens without coverage,when it comes down to paying for this, suddenly the budget deficit becomes the number one issue.
    Not so for our adventures into Iraq and Afghanistan.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  211. Irwin

    No question, unemploymenst is the main problem, but health care is not that far behind. The point here is that Obama needs to sharpen his message. For the people's support for a major overhaul he needs to frontally take on the insurers and Pharmaceuticals and assume the mantel of progressive populism. Single payer or strong public option meeds to be in his plans or he needs to hold the dissenters accountable come election time. Make the Repubs filibuster if necessary. But no more of these stupid compromises! Do what's right~

    Short of this he just do minor tweaking like prohibit insurers from cancellin you when you get sick!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  212. Doug

    No giving up is not what the vote the other day was about people want lower cost. Hospital/Doctor care is out of control. Frivolous lawsuits need to be reined in. Hospitals need to stop being allowed to charge $15 for a box of tissues and $15,000 dollars for a helicopter ride. These amounts are clearly excessive and that is where the problems are. No one is saying hospitals should not make a profit but why must a new machine be paid off in 1 year. Face it when you are injured or near death how much choice does one really have to choose another doctor or hospital they have patients in a no choice situation. Insurance companies making a profit is also ok but they should not be gouging consumers.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  213. selwyn

    The health care reform became a joke the whole world is looking at America in total disbelief.

    The simple solution is and always was Medicer for everyone, increase the payroll deduction by a factor that makes it defit nutural. The private insurance will sell the supplement and those who want to go to private hospital that charge about the standard fees may buy private health insurance plans.

    The the mass population of different age groups contributing into the fund Medicare would be solvent


    January 22, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
  214. Brendan McCay

    Absolutely not! We need some of the good things in that bill. The USA elected Obama to enact the change he promised. I do not think we should undermine Obama just because Massachusetts elected Brown. The Republicans have tried to stop the President at every turn and this is just more No from the Party of No. Show some backbone Democrats!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  215. Cam spurgeon Ocala, Fl

    I believe the White house should write an amended plan and let it go for vote.They should include some consumer protection such preexisting conditions etc and other insurance controls that are popular with almost all to stop the abuses by insurance companies. They should work with republicans on some tort control and they should allow competition across all state lines.I think some expansion might be possible by really going after medicare and medicaid fraud and use that money back into medicare to let more people in at 55 or 60,There is a way to improve what is happening now but everyone needs to work together and I say if Congress can't get it done then let them all go back home and we bring in new peopleon both sides...They are not doing their job if they can't solve what is happening in this country.Open your eyes people.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  216. Cody wade

    In a time where we see oursolves as the poster child for democracy we have a stunningly horrible healthcare system. The republicans say leave it to the free market but all the free market has taught me, while I was growing up, was that the rich can have anything they want (and if their micheal jackson it kills them) and the poor are barely accepted into the E.R. I'm not saying to leave it all to the government, but there is a need for competition...

    January 22, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  217. Ron Harper

    Yes, they should abandon the plans now before them and then come up with a plan that covers those in need and those in a low income group. It is just not possible to come up with a broad plan that would cover everyone in the US and be acceptable to a majority.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:34 pm |
  218. Robert B

    They should drop it or start over. This is a huge amount of money to get 4-6% more people insured, and it doesn't even address the major issues we are experiencing such as 20-30 year olds that don't think they need insurance and just to try and get any. Or the majority of those without insurance are without it for less than 12 months. Or why you have to pay $70.00 for a shoulder sling from a hospital that costs $12.00 at Walgreens and $1.50 or less to make. All congress seemed to be worried about was whether someone would be able to get an abortion on the taxpayer’s dime or not. Maybe they should spend some of their time actually reading the bill they are pushing rather than just looking to see if their part of the pie was entered.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:34 pm |
  219. Cindy Merrill

    Can I ask you to do Seniors a favor? Please inform anyone in power who will listen and respond with something other than the usual form letter: Seniors are not happy. That "generous" one time $250 didn't buy much. Then there was talk about banning prescription drugs from Canada and gutting Medicare advantage-$500 Billion cut from Medicare/Medicaid to cut "waste", with no specific details. Obama gave a nice speech in Ohio today, but the only mention of seniors was the $250 stimulus he threw us- which barely bought 5 weeks worth of groceries. My husband is boiling mad, and he's not the only one. How about an increase in Meals on wheels for rural seniors? Another promise broken. The only time Washington DC gives a frig is when Election month comes up- or when somebody like Scott Brown disrupts their grandiose plans. Why am I angry? Our Snap food credit is not enough for two type2 diabetics to buy a month's worth of groceries: Dept. of "Human" Services ( I use human very loosely) only takes income into account even though low glycemic food costs more. Darn right, I'm angry.
    Cindy Merrill, Richmond, Kentucky

    January 22, 2010 at 7:34 pm |
  220. R.Lord

    The current bill is a handout to health insurance companies. It is the result of business as usual in Congress where lobbyists write laws for out elected representatives to rubber stamp. Fortunately, enough members of congress realize that their constituents are not all stupid and many are mad as hell. Between the AMA, the health insurance companies, and the SEIU, there is no doubt who the current bill would benefit at the expense of the rightfully fed up general public.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  221. Harry Butcher

    Jack, while reading your comments on this issue, I came up with an excellent idea! Let's demand The Congress (both House and Senate) publically declare their vote on Health Care Reform with another requirement – the Congressman (Male and Female) must explain to the public the reason for supporting, or rejecting, Health Care Reform. We do not need to start from scratch on Health Care Reform, but we need to have bi-partisan participation. Doing nothing is not an option! And, just because there are 1 or 2 things you do not like in either version of the Bill, it is not sufficient to deny passage of any Health Care Reform Bill. We have seen and heard the lies from both sides of the issue. Put the best we can get into 1 Health Care Reform Bill, pass it, then negotiate the updates (or modifications) we need to make. Reasoning: If Health Care Reform does not pass, in any form, we all lose!

    Harry – Baltimore, MD

    January 22, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  222. BTabor

    Absolutely not! The American people want better health care, they have just heard too many negatives from the Republicans and don't understand the benefits the health care reform will give them. Republicans have done a better job with negatives than Democrats have with positives. That's because Republican politicians have done nothing to help, but have spent all their time and energy in using the media and demonstrations to defy any attempt to help the people with better health care. Both parties need to communicate the positives for that need for the American people!!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  223. Mike

    Jack, Yes and while we're at it why not just openly turn control of the country over to the corporations who run it behind the scenes anyway. After we're bankrupt and in ruins we can start over again because as it sits our system is totally corrupt and headed for disaster.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  224. Mal

    How in the world can anyone be against "REFORM". By definition, reform should be a step in the right direction to fix something that is broken. All the other administrations have placed this issue in the "too hard to do box" and marched in other directions rather than oppose the big interest groups and big money backing them and their successful anti-reform propaganda to protect their profit making interests.

    Kudos to President Obama by fighting for a really just cause.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  225. David Keeber

    No, we shouldn't give up on the idea, but a retrenching might be a good idea. In my opinion, given the size of this part of our economy and the myriad facets of healthcare (insurance, methods of care, tort reform, etc), it probably would have been a better approach to have bitten off smaller bites. I believe we would have gotten a better job of reforming the system if the Obama admin had said they had a four-year approach, year one doing such and such, year two doing so and so, in order to dig deeply into each sector and craft true reform in a bipartisan manner. Now, everyone is nervous and willing to just give up on something that threatens to bankrupt us if left as written and threatens to bankrupt us if ignored.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  226. Ted

    The country desperately needs healthcare reform now. The insurance companies have virtually no meaningful competition in most markets throughout the country so the free market won't fix this one. The public option is the only way to create that competition.
    Anyone who has had to deal with a serious illness or had a loved one with a serious illness knows that the insurance industry does not play fair at the least and operates with complete lack of ethics at the worst. And the laws that protect them make it very hard for an ordinary person, especially one who may be facing a life threatening illness to seek any meaningful redress. We do have "death panels" in the U.S. they are the insurance companies.
    Maybe a government managed plan would create an unwieldy bureaucracy, but I have yet to see a reasonable alternative offered. And at least I vote for the people in Government, I don't get to vote for who runs the insurance industry.
    More and more people are out of work and without insurance or work for companies that offer no or poor health benefits. This is only going to get worse.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:36 pm |
  227. Cal

    Hmmm! YES! YES! YES! We need to get our people back
    to work to give them back their dignity! They have suffered enough
    and they want to take care of their families. Are you listening Obama
    NO! on Health Care and YES! on JOBS! That is what will help!!!!!!!!
    Also, instead of handing out Trillions of $$$$$ on Wall Street , Banks,
    and Auto companies, give the $$$$$ to the people! They can use it
    to put back into this god-awful economy!! Get to work Washington,

    January 22, 2010 at 7:36 pm |
  228. JD

    Congress should start over which would mean scrapping the current proposal – no government take over period. Start with open discussions with both parties and some concrete, common-sense changes in our current system that would bring down health care premiums to make it affordable for anyone that wants it. Sincerely, J.D.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:37 pm |
  229. kirk

    What started out as a good idea quickly went south due to the politics involved. A good bill should stand on its own merit...not due to arm twisting or deals being made behind the scenes. With the current political climate, I don't believe it is possible for congress to pass a viable bill. Give it a rest...a long rest.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:38 pm |
  230. Clark

    If they want to work on a health care reform bill that is consistent with the American Constitution and freedom and the free market .... they should proceed.

    But as long as they are trying to force America into socialism ... no they need to stop.

    FDR moved us a long way down the road to entitlement mentality ... and we don't need/want Obama enhancing the entitlement mentality any more than it already is .... in fact it would be nice to hope for a change in attitude back to the rugged individual taking care of himself/herself and her family without demanding somebody else do the hardwork for them.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:38 pm |
  231. Jackson French

    I really hope not I need this my parents need this and the American people need this. Because of the way things have been going the last 9 years or so Im ashamed to call myself an American but this would be a big step toward making this a better place to be for people. But if the U.S keeps going down the road of complaining about what the other party is doing instead of focusing on what the people need Europe is looking better and better as a place to live to.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:38 pm |
  232. Ashok Srinivasa

    I cannot believe how screwed up people's priorities are. They let
    Bush get away with starting an expensive war that caused thousands
    of American deaths and tens or perhaps hundereds of thousands
    of Iraqi deaths. But when Obama tries to cutail the undue influence
    of drug companies and hospitals for the betterment of the people,
    everyone is worried about the spending and about "big government".
    I believe this is the private industry publcity machine at work to
    influence a gullible public. I do not believe the U.S. is a democracy
    anymore. It is a country run by, for and of big business.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:39 pm |
  233. Jim

    Barack Obama came to Washington D.C with honorable intentions and a preference for decision making that was based on honesty and integrity. He indicated from the very beginning that his vision was one of cooperation between Democrats and Republicans in order to do the best possible job for the people of this country. It is an adult, rational approach to making good decisions. Unfortunately, the Republicans in congress have shown nothing but hatred for this approach and see no reason whatsoever to work alongside the Democrats in order to make things better for the prople of this country. It's George W. Bush's "either you're with us or against us" atitude all over again. Sad to say, but there's nothing anybody can do about it.

    It might be time for Barack Obama to give up on this dysfunctional relationship, for those on the right have clearly and maliciosly dedicated themselves to the task of choking off any opposition to their views, no matter what.

    As a Democrat, I urge the members of our party to never, ever sink to such childish and destructive behavior. Those on the right should truly be ashamed of themselves.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:39 pm |
  234. Michael

    Yes Give it up!

    Need a more reasonable plan that starts with where we can save money, Tort reform, ability to purchase medical plans across state lines and show me the savings on Medi-Care. If you cannot do this then don't waste my time.

    I agree the Insurance companies should allow pre-existing conditions. To appease the extreme left and to keep the insurance companies honest, I would even consider placing a trigger in the plan to keep everybody honest.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:40 pm |
  235. karl larson

    Congress should give up trying to pass anything. .and just "elimate the middleman" by letting the big corporations run the country directlyl.

    Think of the savings.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:40 pm |
  236. Len Smith

    No way should Congress give up on Health care. The United States deserves to have as good as the rest of the world, like Canada, and many European countries.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:40 pm |
  237. Missy Hickman

    I have been a social worker for 25 years and work with the uninsured middle class workers. It is heart breaking to see a hard working American citizen not be able to get the health care they need. I have never forgotten one woman who came to me with breast cancer. When I told her there were no programs that she would be eligible for. She asked one simple question, "What am I suppose to do die? Sadly, she did because there was no insurance for the middle class. The American 's should demand the all elected positions and political appointees give up their insurance and free medical care provided by the government. Lets see how they like it.
    Longwood, Florida

    January 22, 2010 at 7:40 pm |
  238. Kile Anderson

    Yes, considering that 60% of the people in the country don't want this horrendous bill, that would be a good idea.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  239. Matthew Struhar

    Health Care, Massachusetts political race, stock market having its worst day in 3 months...all of this should tell the senate, house and president stop the bickering and the who can do what and who will be stopped...we put you all in office to work for the people to improve the United States. Wait, give the banks a another bailout so they can get their million dollar salaries and bonuses.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  240. susan nezami

    I have a simple solution: 1. members of the house and congress will no longer be afforded health insurance. they must acquire it by themselves the same way the average American does; and 2. henceforth, lobbying will be made illegal. If we find a way to pass these 2 bills, health care reform and by extension, the economy will no longer be of issue because the minute members of congress are forced to face the same problems as the average American, health care reform will be passed by a winning majority..........and by no longer being beholding to outside interests as a result of the termination of lobbying, members of congress will no longer be attached to any special outside interests groups and focus solely on doing the job their constituents elected them for. So I say instead of focusing on health care reform and the economy, let's focus on fixing congress first because that seems to be the core of the problem.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  241. Ekemini

    YES!!! President Obama and Congress should wave the white flag of surrender when it comes to health care. The writing is on the wall, the American people have spoken we don't care about healthcare at the moment. Those of us on main street only care about the economy, jobs, and the housing crisis once these three issues are resolved we can begin to talk about healthcare until then put a lid on it. If President Obama, Reid, and Pelosi had the same passion and zeal for fixing the economy and the housing crisis I'd actually be able to stay in my home.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  242. berda fom tennessee

    We can't run from everything that's hard. Sometimes you have to take a stand and do what's right. Those that don't want to address the problem are from that ugly element of our society that doesn't care if people are hurt and dying. This is the United States of America, but these days we are anything but united. You know what they say, "united we stand, but divided we fall". I hate for us to fall just so Republicans can blame it on Obama. That's just sick and wrong!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  243. William Blight

    We voted for Obama because we wanted major changes. If the president and the Democrats compromise on this issue, they will have no political future. Leadership requires sticking to your principles – not looking over your shoulder at polls regarding what to do. Besides, the Republicans have no ideas, other than cutting taxes for the rich and giving big tax breaks for the coal and oil industries. But then again, give them credit, they don't deviate from meeting the needs of their lobbyist base. In my opinion, Obama and the Democrats should not suspend fighting for real health care changes; they should suspend giving any credence to your pop-up polls.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  244. Troy Johns

    When will CNN become responsible? I want to see CNN ask tough questions from politicians and fortune 1000 companies. If these two groups knew that reporters were coming after them, what do you think might happen? Are you afraid of loosing ad dollars or afraid of loosing access to the White House? CNN is part of the problem. You are all cowards! The fact that you have rationalized your actions indicates that you are motivated by greed. You are not suppose to report the news...you are to dig for facts and ask questions and then report. But being a coward and a pacifist is easier for you. CNN, you are suppose to be asking the questions that me and everyone else in "fly over country" can't. You have more power than you think...so use it already! NOW is not the time to be a coward. Man up CNN!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:42 pm |
  245. Bill Palace

    It's frightening how ill-informed the public is about health care. America is soon to be the laughing stock of the developed nations of the world which have had far more comprehensive and effective health care for years. No, Congress should not give up reforming the current insurance cash cow. However, it should take the practical, incremental approach recommended by President Obama to pass the parts of the legislation that have some consensus among the independent voters.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:42 pm |
  246. Adam

    If this bill ends up in the dumpster, that is because it is "too good to pass". Sure there are things that are not exactly what the people need in the proposals. The left wants to jam all bull crap that's not important in the package and the right points out to those details and rejects the bill altogether. I guess that's how politics work. I feel sorry for Obama who's caught up in the middle. I think they should sit down and clean up the crap off bill. Then maybe it gets some prospect of passing. With all the back and forth between the left and the right on tv, even people who supported the bill first are starting to doubt the it.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:43 pm |
  247. Dan Neils

    Here's a simple, 4 step prescription for healthcare reform:

    1. Require all companies offering coverage to accept all applicants, but allow them to charge up to 30% more for those with pre-exisiting medical conditions.

    2. Let folks voluntarily buy the policy of their choice, and reimburse a percentage of the premiums in tax credits, either 25%, $50%, 75%, or 95% according to need.

    3. In States where there are less than 8 companies offering insurance plans, allow the residents to purchase coverage from neighboring States to improve competition.

    4. Have Medicare hire 10,000 auditors (100% commission based) with the sole duty of seeking out Medicare Fraud–and pay them a 5% commission on what they recover.

    These 3 propositions could garner bipartisan support and would have a relatively low pricetag. It would insure coverage for any who wanted it, and would provide a means of making it affordable for most, making the best use of the free market.

    Dan Neils
    Health Insurance Consutant
    Oregon City, OR

    January 22, 2010 at 7:43 pm |
  248. Donald B. McKenzie,PhD.

    The reported Congressional bills are a potpurrie of unreasonable
    ideals and impractical financial costs. The costs so published are
    fantasy, exorbitant. The benefits are smoke & the requirements are
    mirrors. Bi-partisan steps to universal insurance are required. DBMcK.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:43 pm |
  249. Lowell

    As an poor ignorant middle class retiree, I can't make sense out of this monstrous health care plan. I would like, however, to compare it to an automobile engine that's coughing and sputtering. We don't need to reinvent the gasoline engine, maybe it only needs a new set of plugs or fuel injectors.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:43 pm |
  250. Sony

    If the guys in washington truly believe in bipartisanship then this is the best time to show that and get something real done. Stop the bickering and blaming game along with the close door meetings, and get practical and realistic. Health care like jobs is important, but if people on both sides of the aisle are truly interested in working in the interests of the common man then they can truly find a solution to both in quick time...

    January 22, 2010 at 7:43 pm |
  251. Brenda

    No, we need reform of the system and someone has to have
    enough guts to get the ball rolling on this issue. Fight on. We
    ALL deserve better health care in this country.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:43 pm |
  252. Clare Burton

    Hell no! If they would have quit bickering to begin with and supported their President, we wouldn't be worrying about this right now. The same thing went on with Social Security, accept it got pushed through quickly and then the masses found out it helped them. Gee, there are plenty of well off Republicans drawing Social Security Checks and I bet they would have a fit if you tried to take their checks away!
    The Dems should remember the old saying; United We Stand, Divided we FALL! Boy, have they screwed this up!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:43 pm |
  253. Jerry Bleecker

    You must be kidding. Healthcare costs have spiralled out of control and American's are one of the few developed nations in the world without some form of government funded healthcare for all. Prosperity is like a chair with three legs. It takes a successful economy, and healthy, as well as well educated workforce for a nation to succeed.

    US Health is overrun by your Insurance Companies whose sole purpose for being is to make as much money off citizens as possible.

    And the Republicans want to kill healthcare? Who do they work for - citizens or corporations. If your elected official backs insurance companies over your health, send them packing. They don't have your interests or American Dream in mind - just their own

    January 22, 2010 at 7:44 pm |
  254. daryl

    Start over and listen to "The People"

    January 22, 2010 at 7:44 pm |
  255. Judith Simpson

    No, the administration should NOT give up on a health reform bill. What they should do is make it part of a "Put America to Work" bill that addresses both health insurance reform and job creation. If the administration created a public works program, similar to the WPA, and gave people health insurance as a benefit with it, Obama would ride it into a second term. No one is healthy without a job.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:44 pm |
  256. Chad

    Congress should not give up trying to pass health care. It is a noble cause. However, the major mistake with this bill is all the bloated legislation that's a result of the democrats making under-the-table deals thereby making "woud-be" reasonable legislation for all Americans into one that caters to a long list of special interests.

    The simple fact that this bill is many hundreds of pages long by itself merits careful scrutiny. I find it disgusting and irresponsible that house leaders like Nancy Pelosi are trying to rifle this through Congress without giving everyone a reasonable chance to review what's at stake. She is prone to using shame-on-you tactics to her colleagues for trying to take the time and not rush into a vote. This is reprehensible.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:44 pm |
  257. Tom McCann

    We absolutely need to press ahead with healthcare reform. The Republicans have dictated to us for too long. The fact that Reid and Pelosi have massively mishandled the legislation shouldn't result in punishment for those who need healthcare.
    Scale it back, get the uninsured on some kind of program, and pass it. If the Republicans filibuster, take away their earmarks and withdraw from their favorite wars.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:44 pm |
  258. Tom M

    Health care reform as it currently is is done. Democrats can't even sell it to other democrats. Most normal people would agree health care reform needs to happen but not the way Obama and Pelosi want it, by taxing the middle class. Health care reform needs to be addressed by asking why everything costs so much to begin with. Of course all it takes is a few campaign dollars to kill a question like that.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:45 pm |
  259. LeJuan

    If most agree that something must be done (either now or later) because of the rising cost of healthcare, why stop the process now? I do not understand the popular philosophy of "giving up" on things we deem important, just because we encounter challenges. How much energy, time and money have we spent working on our healthcare system (and other inefficiencies in our society) in this country which have not produced any results. If this is going to continue to be our practice; we are all just wasting our time. To me this is very simple: Either its important or its not.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:45 pm |
  260. Fred in Los Angeles

    They should at least give up on the bill they were trying to shove down our throats. Right now jobs is topic number 1. This country can't sustain itself much longer if this administration continues this path to economic self destruction.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:45 pm |
  261. lr white

    Yes, the health care bill should be the least of our worries right now & Haiti even more so, we have too many of our own people that need to be looked after. !00 million to Haiti , we should match other countries

    January 22, 2010 at 7:46 pm |
  262. Karen - Merced, CA


    JOBS, JOBS, JOBS, that's what the people want. And they want REAL regulation for the banks. They're not interested in watching a continuing health reform spectacle in congress. I believe we need some kind of health reform but what the people have seen is a big giveaway to the health insurance companies. Right now, congress should give it up. Maybe someday......

    January 22, 2010 at 7:47 pm |
  263. George Up in the Northwoods

    Jack this is pretty much a no brainer. Having a job is more important than healthcare and always will be – you really can't do anything without one – you kind of need a roof over your head and something to eat before you can worry about healthcare and you will need money to pay for the healthcare regardless of who runs it. I expect the democrats will let this die down a bit and regroup and try again later with an end run or hail mary by bribing a few more more congressmen and senators.

    The American People need to wake up and realize no matter what the Obama Administration promises you – you are going to pay for it. Healthcare is just another venue for the Government to tax and spend your wage earnings – its not about your health and never will be. The government is broke and needs another way to raise money thinking the american public won't know what there doing. You will think your getting better health benefits in the short run, but end up taking it in the shorts in the long run with a government run program.

    If the american people would just check the last 100 years of history, they would see that 16th ammendment on income tax that was ratified in 1917, the social security act of 1932, and medicaid act of 1965 were all sold to the american public with the same set of lies and deals they are using on healthcare in 2009. And come to think of it, these pilars of socialism were all driven by a democratic president, house and senate.

    If healthcare is passed, hopefully we will see Paul Revere ride again – I already have the barn door open for him.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:49 pm |
  264. Peter Wolfe


    I think that this entire process should have been more gradual in that it was too fast with the looming debt, Afghanistan, natural disasters in Haiti, Stimilus issue, and things simular to that putting it up for jeoprady on how to afford it. However, I agree that we aught to have universal health care as we are the only developed country in the world that doesn't have it. We also don't have real universal education either just subsidized, granted or loaned and water down education with no parent responsability. We should pay the debt off of China to bring jobs to Mexico, Central American and Latin America not China, who doesn't care about american interest at heart. So, Bush doesn't get any blame for anything? It's insaine the guy was stupid.
    Peter from Auburn, Alabama

    January 22, 2010 at 7:49 pm |
  265. Dan Leonetti

    If its a good bill today it will be a good bill in a month or two. If its a bad bill now it then time won't help it.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:49 pm |
  266. Maureen (Sacramento, Ca)

    Yes they should put it on the back burner for the time being, There are more important issues in this country right now, like JOBS. Why aren;t they concentrating on that?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:50 pm |
  267. BOB of Morganton N C

    The Democrats now want to focus on jobs?That ignorant bunch of idiots should have been focusing on jobs all the time they were wasting on health care.Now they want to focus on jobs ONLY because elections are on the horizon.Lets vota them all out and start over.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:50 pm |
  268. Robert Harbison

    If a white person migrates to the United Sttes from Africa, then He or She is LEGALLY known as an African-American. My point is that Black people BORN IN THIS COUNTRY ARE NOT LEGALLY AFRICAN-AMERICAN. THEY ARE SIMPLY AMERICAN. The ony Blacks that can attach the african prefix to their Heritage is the ones who have migrated from Africa.

    Bob Harbison
    Cannon Beach, OR. 97110

    January 22, 2010 at 7:51 pm |
  269. Dave in KY

    I didn't like the bill. 2000 pages of intentional confusion and misdirection, but that doesn't mean reform is dead. Don't give up. Go back, start over, and do your jobs! Write a bill that makes sense and take it to the people. It's what you should have done in the first place. Just ridiculous.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:52 pm |
  270. Mike in NYC

    Washington should accept the message being sent to them by the nation. People do not want backroom deals, party bribes and payoffs, and political thuggary as the means to any reform. People have not seen the 'transparancy' that they were promised and are obviously distrustful of any/all rushed legislation.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:52 pm |
  271. Karen

    No, they should not give up – it's crazy that we are even still debating this issue. The Republicans will NEVER give us health care. It was a mistake all along to even consider appeasing them!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:53 pm |
  272. Frank

    NO! We need something passed.

    I have a friend that is caring two policies because she had cancer and is afraid of loosing her coverage, preexisting condition. I don't have insurance. Hospital can't afford to treat people with out insurance. The government will go broke if something isn't done.

    I am really tired of people who make decisions based on emotions. No socialized medicine, most people. Global warming isn't real because God wouldn't punish people for being successful, Rush Limbaugh. NO!, The republicans in congress and Obama wasn't born in this country.

    Start thinking people! Get your head out of your butts and start making decisions based on facts!

    January 22, 2010 at 7:53 pm |
  273. Peter Alexander

    No!! But it has to be the right health care plan at the right price. The number LEAST REPORTED in the media is the 10-year projections for Medicare fraud, which, when factoring in the Post-War Baby Boomers, exceeds $1 Trillion. Point: Cracking down on Medicare Fraud could largely pay for the President's plan WITHOUT raising taxes to cover it.

    Congress' Response: DNRT (Do Nothing, Raise Taxes)

    Peter Alexander
    Petersburg, Virginia

    January 22, 2010 at 7:54 pm |
  274. Deborah Ahonen

    Congress has the ability to chew gum and walk- they need to focus on health care reform as well as jobs and the economy, because health care reform is CRITICAL to stabilizing the economy. Health care costs are rising so fast that if not addressed they will drive the economy even further into the ground. In actuality, when health care reform began, 54% of Americans favor the public option, but tragically the airwaves have been swamped with slick ads paid for by the insurance and pharmaceutical industries (under other names of course) that have convinced the sheep-like Americans to fear health care reform. It comes down to a simple question: who would you rather have in charge of your health care- for-profit Aetna or the not-for-profit government?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:54 pm |
  275. Sidhartha

    A single health care bill will not be liked by everyone, nor will it be perfect. But the Congress should keep trying to pass the health care bill and later fix anything in the bill that needs to be fixed. Let the poor in this country not suffer any more because of health related expenses.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:54 pm |
  276. Richard

    Why stop? We have already spent millions. My company medical just went up, effective Feb1, 26%. In three years the rates have gone up over 93%. Our company is now thinkling to drop covered health insurance completely. When the rest of the 55% who do not support healthcare reform start lossing theirs and it will happen, they will be blaming Obama for that. By the way the wonderful coverage that the Congress enjoys , (the rates on that will also double) will cost the tax payers plenty. Healthcare in this country is controlled by the rich insurance companies. The 55% do not have a clue yet.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:55 pm |
  277. Jimmie Stewart

    Don't go back to the drawing board, give it up.
    The furture of our nation does'nt rest on health care.
    We need to get out from under our debt to other countries and balance our budget.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:55 pm |
  278. lynn

    who needs healthcare reform when you can go to haiti and get it for free from some of the best doctor's in the world.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:56 pm |
  279. Klein

    This is a process that has had some ugly episodes, out of the people's concern, but also with some big companies' lobbyists trying to derail it. Americans should keep on fighting until Everyone can be taken care of.

    Klein , Oklahoma

    January 22, 2010 at 7:56 pm |
  280. Allen from Illinois

    Might as well, with incompetent Democrats in Congress, idiots in Massachusetts, and the Party of "No," there is no way to get meaningful healthcare reform done now. Democrats wasted a golden opportunity by giving in to the Insurance Industry, by refusing to contain costs with a “Public Option,” and by allowing quasi-Republican “democrats” to add anti-choice rules to the bill. They committed political suicide. The GOP played their part as well by refusing to work on anything because they hate the President.

    The Democrats refused to listen to the American Public who WANTED a “Public option,” now the American Middle Class will pay for their petty squabbles and failures with less access to healthcare, poor quality health care, and skyrocketing premiums.

    For those who thought healthcare rates would increase under reform? You better get prepared, the REAL rate increases are just starting, you’ll be lucky to be able to afford healthcare over the next ten years.

    As for the people of Massachusetts, they have healthcare, so they resoundingly told the rest of the nation to go “Screw itself.”

    Time to turn the nation back over to the GOP so they finish the job they started in 1998, the absolute destruction of the American Middle Class.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:57 pm |
  281. Salih Uces

    My question is to 55 percent of Americans who think this bill should be suspended, did you ever ask yourself why we are paying a lot more than other countries do pay for health care? and how long do we have to keep paying most expensive health care in the world?
    My wife is a teacher at a public school Although she has one of the best insurance, her co-pay for a bottle of cholesterol medicine is $100 while you can still get the same brand American made medicine for $20 in other counties without insurance.


    January 22, 2010 at 7:57 pm |
  282. Michael McGarry , Shawnee Kansas

    At the bare minimum, Congresst should pass a "health care reform" bill that requires Insurance companies to honor their policies – no maximum benefits, no pre-existing excilusions, extended COBRA benefits for employees who loose their jobs (maybe 3 yrs instead of 18 mos).
    Also the bill shoul extend Medicare to people 55 plus who want to opt-in at Medicare rates versus open market rates (for whatever reason).

    The bill should also allow insurers to license, register and compete in all 50 states and eliminate the monopolies that exist today. Medical insurerance is no longer a backyard industry.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:58 pm |
  283. Randy Buckner, Olympia, WA

    The health care bill is a sham without meaningful tort reform, which was pushed by Republicans. As physicians, my wife and I order a host of labs and imaging studies just to play the lawsuit game, not because the patient really needs it. It is a shame how this country has become enslaved to lawyers, not just in medicine, but every aspect of our lives. For meaningful health care, stop billlions in waste due to lawyers.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:58 pm |
  284. Ed

    (Springfield, VA). No. Affordable health care should be available to all. As for those who claim it's "socialism" and "government running our lives", perhaps they will be "patriotic" and give up any claims to Social Security Retirement, Disability, SSI, Medicare, Medicaid, unemployment insurance benefits, and other such "socialistic" programs.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:58 pm |
  285. Tim R.

    Most Americans do not support a government takeover of the health care system. The government cannot afford to implement comprehensive health reform without incurring additional debt, which is already at record levels.

    With the number of international and domestic issues facing this country, health care reform is not a priority. Unemployment is still over 10%, dollar valuation continues to take a hit, terrorism has escalated, and Iran & North Korea continue to build WMDs.

    Washington needs to listen to their constituents, instead of ramming unwanted legislation down our throats. For a change, Washington should consider crafting legislation that doesn't resort to corruption, bribery, graft, and carving out niches for special interest groups like the SEIU.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:58 pm |
  286. Ronald Holst

    At this Point It dose not matter, what Dose , Is our nation Is in critical condition that needs to be fixed first ,We have a nation that no longer
    wants a government of the people for the people by the people , we do have nation that is headed For a single party system the Party Is the Of Big business , i am beginning to believe that We should pass a law that would give separation of business and state oh wait we tried that with religion ands look how well that works .
    And Did we not try that with the Deregulation of wall street Or should I say the Banks well one in the same since then and that has served us well .

    January 22, 2010 at 7:58 pm |
  287. Cliff Schlenker

    Rapid City ,S.D. I and many other people feel noone person knows what's in the Health bill therfor i feel thay should start over on a small scale fix one thing at a time instead of this one than try to repair it afteer it becomes law, we have medical care for poorer people now there is public health places and thay go to the emergence room now which I know is more expensive,It's the middle working class that needs the help to pay for the emploree health insurance,The congress and all goverment people should have the same insurnce

    January 22, 2010 at 7:58 pm |
  288. Purtman

    Congress should not give up. When the plans first came out, a great majority of people wanted it. However, in trying to please the Grand Obstructionist Party, the bill got watered down. I've lost one friend and nearly lost a family member because they didn't have health insurance. I've also been told by doctors' offices that they won't set up an appointment without my insurance information.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:59 pm |
  289. Katherine Riebe

    To answer your question, no I think the U.S. Congress and U.S. Senate of a moral responsibility to revamp the healthcare system in the United States of America. For several reasons: one, many Americans need healthcare; two, the cost of healthcare has skyrocketed, therefore, it is important that we make healthcare affordable to all, even if it means creating a budget for those in poverty to have access to healthcare. It is a moral and ethical responsibility for Congress to pass a bill now. Over time, there can be amendments added to it to help improve the healthcare system in this country. We have to begin somewhere, otherwise we will continue on the same status quo path we've been on for the last 10+ years or so. To sum it up, create the healthcare bill and pass it, then improve upon it. What is so difficult about that. I wish the Republicans and GOPers would stop putting up road blocks to improving our healthcare system, period.

    January 22, 2010 at 7:59 pm |
  290. Jerry..Dallas Republican

    YES. Not unless PUBLIC OPTION or SINGLE PAYER is on the table,it is pointless to tax us more with mandates to benefit same Health Insurance companies who have raised my insurance by 19.7% last Feb. I now have another letter indicating same increment starting 1st of March this year again. Jack this is 39.4% increment in 24 months! This is true death panel!

    January 22, 2010 at 8:00 pm |
  291. michael

    Yep, Obamacare is dead and it just saved our country Trillions of dollars by not going through. The question should be when is Obama and Congress going to start creating jobs and turning around the economy ?

    January 22, 2010 at 8:00 pm |
  292. Robert

    All polls show that Americans are against the current health care bill. Perhaps politicians should listen to the people for once.

    Rob in CA

    January 22, 2010 at 8:00 pm |
  293. Shawn

    Yes, they should keep pushing healthccare. The democrats just need to do a better job selling it. It is time to stop trying to make everyone happy and start leading. George Bush never waited for democrats to get on board. He pushed ahead and convinced the country what he wanted was right. Stop being nice and start being leaders.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:01 pm |
  294. Dave

    Congress needs to start over on health care "reform". None of the proposals that have been presented address the unsustainable rise in health care costs, and the proposals only increase access by way of throwing unsustainable amounts of tax dollars at the problem. Health care purchases are unlike any other purchase, in that the people providing the service often don't know what it will cost and the people providing the service typically don't even ask. Health care purchasing decisions need to be linked to the cost of the services requested, rather than paying a flat monthly premium regardless of the amount of services used during the year. Likewise, Medicare and Medicaid recipients need to have opportunity cost associated with health care purchases. This can only be accomplished in the context of overall entitlement reform.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:01 pm |
  295. Todd Grigsby, Manteca, CA

    Congress shouldn't give up, it should start over. To hell with a GOP bent on damaging the other party and hurting Americans in the process. Stop wasting time: grow a pair, use reconciliation, get the original House healthcare bill passed, and move on. \

    You're welcome.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:05 pm |
  296. mike wroblewski

    I am a retired corporate executive who believes that capitalism is the best answer for creating the motivation and creativity that increases the size of the economic pie for everyone. However, I also believe that there are critical exceptions which include the provision of public roads, bridges, schools, the military and healthcare. Most importantly, maintaining the status quo is like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic and could ultimately destroy our economy. Congress needs to pass something that breaks the impasse and begins the process of ongoing improvement in our healthcare delivery and payment system.
    Mike Wroblewski

    January 22, 2010 at 8:05 pm |
  297. Ronald Holst

    jack the way Our nation Is headed I think I am going to get a living Will .
    if we can not fix this then how dose any one think we can heal a nation .
    and I do not want or need any heroics so I can live in the streets and Beg for a living because Of my political beliefs . How much is enough for the welthy . I fear to say there will never be enough , And I am not ruthless or uncareing to want to become one of those .
    becase so far by the Grase Of God There Goes this nation and Not Haiti !

    Ronald Holst
    San Antonio, TX.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:06 pm |
  298. ron

    we need to pass health care for all NOW..strike while the iron is hot otherwise it'll be another 50 years before we get it done....ron ,pleasanton.calif.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:06 pm |
  299. Annie, Atlanta

    Absolutely not. That is just what the Republicans and their corporate masters want. Do you know one of my senators told me he would vote against any HC reform because he had to protect insurance company profits? Pass the Senate bill, then fix it before none of us can afford health care or health insurance, including the employers and government.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:06 pm |
  300. Linda B

    Unfortunately, the current Senate bill is the only one that might get passed, but since it really does nothing to control costs I think approval may end up costing people more in the long run. Team Obama doesn't seem to have a good grasp of the strength of his opposition on this or any other topic. I think health care will have to wait until we get some real Democratic leadership.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:07 pm |
  301. Jeff

    Jack let's be honest here. The health care bill was never really about health care. It was an attempt to transfer 1/6th of our economy away from the private sector and in to the hands of the federal government. They got the banks, then the auto industry, and the health care industry was next on the list.

    After a 2,000+ page bill and who knows how much money it was going to cost, the reform would have still left 12 million Americans uninsured. So all you bleeding heart liberals, take that information in to consideration before you tell me that Obama wanted to have universal health care.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:09 pm |
  302. Helena

    NO! I would like to see every American with the same health care coverage that our congressman, senators, etc. have. Health care is a human rights issue not a priviledge for the select few.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:09 pm |
  303. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    Give up? I thought they did that weeks ago.

    Good thing they have great health care, when they get their next physicals and the doctor is unable to do a hernia test because nothing is there, then at least our taxes will pay for their prosthetic.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:09 pm |
  304. Steve in Kent Washington

    Democrats are learning the hard way.."It's the economy stupid"......it was never "It's healthcare stupid". This entire focus on healthcare reform was based on a lie, Obama stated early on, that the economy could not be fixed if they didn't address healthcare costs. If that were true then healthcare costs would have played a bigger role in sending us into this tailspin. I don't remember hearing a single economist blaming healthcare costs as a cause for the recession, or a contributing factor to the rise in unemployment. So the data used to focus the attention on healthcare reform instead of the economy must have been gathered by the same intelligence folks that said Iraq had WMDs.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:10 pm |
  305. Larry Hill

    NO! This is the single most important piece of legislation that's been before Congress in many years. It's way past time to have every American have access to healthcare. I just hope we don't allow the insurance companies raid the taxpayers for profits.
    I'd much rather see an expansion of Medicare than any other solution but I'm afraid that the corporations have used media to hoodwink the American people into thinking that somehow this would be a bad thing. It's really been bad since they passed it over the conservatives (same) objections hasn't it?

    January 22, 2010 at 8:11 pm |
  306. GaryB

    As a small business owner who sees about 8% of my profits go towards catastrophic health insurance for a handful of people, I was really hoping for some real health insurance reform. Tort reform is a smokescreen; legal fees have become a smaller and smaller percentage of health insurance industry as rates (and insurance industry profits) continue to rise. Unfortunately, a lot of members of congress (mostly Republicans but also a few Democrats and at least one Independent) rely on insurance industry dollars to grease their campaigns, so reform will probably never happen while these pols bow down to the big money. Basically, these politicians (once again mostly republicans) are willing to throw small businesses under the bus to further line the pockets of their wealthy corporate donors.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:12 pm |
  307. Cliff Schlenker

    Rapid City ,S.D. I and many other people feel no one person knows what's in the Health bill there for
    I feel thay should start over on a small scale fix one thing at a time instead of this one than try to repair it after it becomes law, we have medical care for poorer people now there is public health places and thay go to the emergence room now which I know is more expensive,It's the middle working class that needs the help to pay for the emploree health insurance,The congress and all goverment people should have the same insurnce

    January 22, 2010 at 8:12 pm |
  308. Hilary Martin

    Congress should continue to try and pass the current bill. All Americans should have health insurance. Although I hear a lot of criticism from the republicans, I don't hear any solutions. Nor, do I hear any republican plans to solve the problems that we have with our economy or job loss. It is easy to criticize, but what is the republican plan?

    January 22, 2010 at 8:12 pm |
  309. maryann from NYC

    NO! NO! NO! The Democrats need to continue the fight for real health
    car reform the fact that the richest country in the world has 45 million
    people with out health care is a total disgrace.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:54 pm |