A Bipartisan Meeting on Health Reform

A Bipartisan Meeting on Health Reform

The bipartisan health care meeting on February 25th offered something you rarely see in Washington: an open, honest, productive discussion between the political parties. Leaders from across the political spectrum gathered at Blair House to exchange thoughts about an issue that touches all of us: rising health costs and unfair insurance company practices.  Throughout the day, both sides found areas of agreement on important issues like: Preventing waste and fraud in Medicare and Medicaid; Addressing medical malpractice reform; Reforming the insurance market; And giving individuals more choices in coverage, and giving small businesses the opportunity to pool coverage for their employees.

The President followed up in a letter to Congressional Leaders on March 2nd identifying several specific ideas he would like to continue exploring.

But there were also important areas of disagreement.  The President believes we should set some common sense rules of the road to protect American families and small businesses from insurance company abuses, and he believes that a problem this big cannot be addressed incrementally. And while insuring 30 million people is going to cost money, it's important to remember that most of this money is going to tax credits that will reduce premiums and help people get better coverage.  And while the President appreciated the participation and input of everyone involved, he doesn't think we can just scrap a year's worth of work and start over. The millions of Americans that are suffering can't afford another year-long debate. There's too much at stake.