Obama Takes Aim at Insurers’ Opposition to Health Reform Proposals
During a town-hall meeting in New Orleans on Thursday, President Obama criticized the health insurance industry, accusing it of trying to block health care reform efforts in order to protect profits, the McClatchy/Sacramento Bee reports.
Obama warned the audience about television advertisements underwritten by "some funny-named group out there that you can't really identify" that is "probably a front group for the insurance industry" (Talev, McClatchy/Sacramento Bee, 10/16). "Don't let them fool you," he said, adding, "We're going to get this done. We're going to fight for it" (Spetalnick, Reuters, 10/16).
In his remarks Obama noted how over the past year, consumer prices have fallen but that health care costs have not (AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 10/15). Health insurers have been "wildly profitable" over the last 10 years, Obama said.
"This is when the insurance companies are really going to start gearing up," he told the crowd, adding that after the Senate Finance Committee approved its health reform bill this week, insurers' stock prices fell. "Now, they're getting nervous," Obama said (Reuters, 10/16).
Obama Calls for Support
On Tuesday, Obama will join Organizing for America's "call parties" via live webcast, in which he will encourage supporters to press congressional lawmakers on passing health care reform legislation, Roll Call reports.
The call parties are part of an effort by OFA to place 100,000 calls to Congress in one day (Koffler, Roll Call, 10/15).During two fundraisers for the Democratic Party and OFA on Thursday, Obama asked supporters to be patient as he tries to fulfill the promises he made as a presidential candidate. He added that although many people might believe that health reform legislation may not go far enough, any reform will help millions of uninsured U.S. residents (AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 10/15). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.