September 9th, 2009
08:02 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Pres. Obama's Health Care Pitch

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/09/09/obama.speech/art.obama.speech.pool.jpg caption= "President Obama told a joint session of Congress that the "time for bickering" over health care is over."]

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

Right now, Pres. Obama is pressing his case for health care reform to a joint session of Congress and to you at home. While he's not the first President to call for change he said he's "determined to be the last."

Tonight, he's unveiling the most detailed description of his vision for health care reform. Will it be a bipartisan deal or a go-it-alone plan? Public option or cooperative? Will Medicare take a hit? Pres. Obama is addressing all of these issues in his speech. We'll have the highlights for you tonight on AC360°. Just the facts. No fiction.

Anderson is also reporting live from Afghanistan. Tonight he has an up close look at Patrol Base Jaker. It's home for the Marines of First Battalion 5th regiment. Temperatures can reach 120° F and there's no escape from the heat. There's dust everyone. The Marines call it moondust. It gets everywhere.

Also tonight, 360 M.D. Sanjay Gupta reports on an elite medical team racing the clock to save lives in Afghanistan. And, Michael Ware returns to Kandahar, the birthplace of the Taliban. Michael once lived in the Afghan city. He shows us how life has changed there and how it's still the same in some ways.

In other news, a replacement has been name for Paula Abdul on American Idol. We'll have that for you and more starting at 10pm ET. See you then!

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
soundoff (93 Responses)
  1. sharonhightower

    I tell you what I watched and listened tonite at that speech and President Obama told it like it truly was. I tell you want we do not need people like the guy with the green tie & the one next to him I do not remember their names but I do remember their demeanor towards the President Obama.. I do not like it and anything President Obama had to said the Rep. were totally against it. Because they set in their seats as if the were glued too them. Looking at this speech looked that we had a "STEPFORD WIVES" . When will the other parties play right and realize that this will also affect their 'OLD ASSES"?

    September 9, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  2. Ceci

    I am glad that he is still for the public option.

    I couldn't believe how disrespectful the GOP party is.

    September 9, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  3. Roger

    How naive someone has to be or not to realize that the pie of the economy is stretched out already and to bring more people to the
    party will only reduce the size of the portion everyone receive?
    How naive someone needs to be for not to realize that the statement that the illegal aliens are not part of the public option? of course they are not now but next year when all the 20 million are going to be under amnesty!

    September 9, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
  4. Susannah

    If they would just start reform with shutting out the PACS and the lobbyists, then maybe progress will be made. It's time for the president to show some guts and take Washington back from the people who pay to get a vote in favor of their interest/company.

    September 9, 2009 at 10:23 pm |
  5. Anna

    I will be the first to say, please pass this. I'm a 36 year old female that has no health insurance with a pre-existing condition and have been quoated with $500.00 a month premiums. At my job, that's laughable. I get care where it is given freely, which at times, that isn't even an option. For example: I went to the local health department for yearly female exams and was turned down because I wasn't sexually active. This is our government at work..... please, you have to get this right.

    September 9, 2009 at 10:23 pm |
  6. Scott Stodden

    I thought the President explained himself perfectly tonight during his speech. Without a public option there can be no real healthcare reform. I only hope that now Republicans and Democrats can join together and get real health reform passed and signed into law. Now is not the time to play games but to get things done.

    Scott Stodden (Freeport,Illinois)

    September 9, 2009 at 10:20 pm |
  7. Maria

    why is it ok for Pres. Obama to call people liars??? Why is it ok for President Obama to mock, belittle, insult and dismiss 50% of the American People who do not accept his plan as it is??? Why can't we call him out when he lies, but he can be rude to 50% of Americans??? Abortions will be covered!!! Private Insurance companies will be run out of business! Employers will pay the 8% penalty instead of providing insurance – people will be forced onto the public option and care will be rationed!!!!

    September 9, 2009 at 10:19 pm |
  8. Laura

    How dare Rep. Joe Wilson shout out "You lie!" during President Obama's speech in regards to illegal immigrants. Especially when he was speaking the truth! Although not a resident of South Carolina – thank goodness – you can be assured that I will contribute a nice sum of money to whomever runs against him. Meanwhile he owes the President a public apology. As another also posted, President Bush and VP Cheney stood in front of Congress on more than one occasion and DID lie about WMD. Where was Joe Wilson's psuedo sense of ethics then????

    Meanwhile, the rude and disrespectful behavior of other Republicans was noticable even to my 10 year old daughter. Shame on these elected officials! I'm disgusted to know these are the same officials that will be deciding the future of our country.

    September 9, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  9. Joseph

    President Obama hit a home run this evening with his speech on health care reform and to all the Republicans including the pathetic congressman from South Carolina I hope they heard his words. The president has reached out his hand again only to get it slapped. This proves the Democrat's should go it alone and pass legislation on health reform now. The Republicans have nothing to offer.

    Joe D

    September 9, 2009 at 10:15 pm |
  10. Meret Wilson

    Agree with most points mentioned above, especially to childish, rude, but fully expected behavior of people who do not care about people, only thier pocketbooks. Bousany's response to the speech was so laughable being as it was VERY clear he made his little video BEFORE the speech. Just all part of the buffoonary on that side of the aisle. Just think how all this is looking to the rest of the world when they see the replays of this evening. And we wonder why we are not respected as a nation?????

    September 9, 2009 at 10:12 pm |
  11. Ron

    Obama proved he is a good orator but he is naive if he believes either party will stop their bickering show long enough to pass anything bipartisan. His plan will not do what he thinks and will do more than WE want it to. He attacked the Republicans and liberals clap, just as conservatives did with Bush in office. People, things are not going to change except for the worse, not because of one party or the other but because of BOTH parties. Democratic leaders are hypocrites and Republican leadership is owned by the same power brokers that the Democratic leadership is owned by. It's just smoke and mirrors. Don't be suckered by the vision in front of you. Look at the man behind the curtain. All of this is just a big time show for the masses, paid for by money we DON'T have. When the dollar falls through the floor and the price of a loaf of bread tops 3 dollars then you will see the REAL results of the actions being taken now.

    September 9, 2009 at 10:10 pm |
  12. Username

    I am an Independent voter. I voted for John McCain. However, I am voting for President Obama next time.He made an excellent case for his healthcare plan.He met Republicans half way,now they should do the same.Also,this whole school speech controversy is SHAMEFUL! What other President has had to endure this? It is almost as shameful as an elected official shouting " you lie" at the President during an address to the nation. What is wrong with these people?

    September 9, 2009 at 10:10 pm |
  13. mark dorenfeld

    We voted, we elected a president. George Bush was my president for 8 years. I did not agree with his policies. He was still my president. I am done with bi partisanship. Yelling liar, guns at town meetings and sarah palin means we move on. The majority must move forward. The fringe has taken over the right. Time to move on

    September 9, 2009 at 10:09 pm |
  14. Terrell Roberts, Los Angeles

    Iris.... You and I have it ALL figured out. I only wish we all could think like us, without a doubt, America would be a better place. Thank you Iris.... thank you,

    – Terrell
    Los Angeles, CA

    September 9, 2009 at 10:05 pm |
  15. Mary

    I also agree that this was a great speech. I was disappointed with Bouscany's response that they should throw it out and start over. That is ridiculous. If he was concerned about it, he should have been a part of drafting it in the first place. You don't wait until something is 80% ocmplete and then suggest starting over. The Sen.'s that were disrespectful, owe Obama and the American people an apology.

    Hopefully, both sides can now move forward together and come to an agreement. We have come too far to not finish this.

    September 9, 2009 at 10:05 pm |
  16. BeBe

    Pres. Obama is back! He was forceful and honest. It is time for change!! NOW! Our family has a prescription bill of $3,000 a month. We have insurance but cannot afford the out of pocket money it costs. My 26 yr old son had a kidney transplant 3 years ago & has to have his meds or he will die! I pray every day his insurance co. will not cancel him. Please, please we need reform NOW!!

    September 9, 2009 at 10:04 pm |
  17. Mary

    As the President said, now is the time to act to provide quality affordable heathcare for all. It begins with prevention and continues with insurance that covers everyone all the time. Congress, please start working together. Present, discuss, compromise, create. This is what your constituents are expecting from you. I now doctors who have gone bankrupt. I have family members who cannot purhcase insurance. I have other family members who had to file bankruptcy due to a health care issue. My husband and I now have what would be considered pre-existing conditions if we moved, changed jobs, retired, etc. Please stop the madness and begin the real job of reform. Take the best from all and make a plan that works.

    September 9, 2009 at 10:04 pm |
  18. K. Cheeves

    This holds it weight for the citizens to live their lives in the fashion that pleases them. President Obama's health care plan that was proposed, if I am not mistaken, a four tier program, If you have insurance, you can keep it without any increase. It will be illegal to be let go for pre-existing illness. Holding healthcare accountable on price and coverage, and types of coverage in general. this would stop the monopoly train that insurance companies have been banking on. The last thing that got my attention, that even though a public option would ultimately end the struggle of all citizen. The public option should be for the citizen who can not afford insurance and citizens who are not employed, but once employed you must get insurance outside of the public options...fair and no way to abuse the system.... I love this plan. This will the take to overall economics out of the equation of health insurance, and now make it moral responsibility to progress the health of all United States citizens....I am very proud of this president. He is standing up to the pressure of politics

    September 9, 2009 at 10:01 pm |
  19. sue from indiana

    i am sorry for going on about this but i also feel and (i am a white middle class woman,) but i do feel this joe wilson would have not yelled out in such disrepect if it were a white president speaking and i am so sorry to have to say this. it is sad .

    September 9, 2009 at 9:57 pm |
  20. Theresa

    I thought President Obama gave a great speech! The level of rudeness by some of the people was incredible and I hand it to the President for not responding to it. I've seen better behaviour from 2 year olds! They should be ashamed of themselves – I'm glad the camera was on them to identify them!

    Do these people have to spend $800 a month for health care? They make more money than most of us and can afford to pay for health care ...and they have the best plan available and I know they don;t spend $800 a month for it!! I agree with the President that we all should have the same option!.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:55 pm |
  21. ChrystalWolf

    You can disagree all you want but to be disrespectful to the President of The United States shows a lack of any class...Shame,Shame on you!

    September 9, 2009 at 9:53 pm |
  22. Kristy

    Why did Sen. Wilson just blantly embarrass the Republican party even more than it already is. And who was this man giving the rebuttal it looked like a Saturday night live prop. It's a joke Jindal didn't teach them a lesson. You can not have anyone speaking after Pres. Obama it doesn't work they should have waited until 2morrow. I can gurantee if CNN took a poll nobody who watched the rebuttal(if anyone did) can remember this man name. Trust me Barack will get health care reform passed.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:52 pm |
  23. E

    I agree whole heartly with your comments ... my questions is what are the repercusions for good old JOE WILSON. His comments were totally out of character, and if his own party will not address the issue, I call for the American people to speek out against Joe and demand his removal from office

    September 9, 2009 at 9:47 pm |
  24. Fred

    What an utter and epic FAIL!!!! Obama has buried the public option in a heap of rubbish. He threw in with a bunch of other insurance policies and said you can only access it or any other "more affordable" policy if you don't already have insurance. How is a "public option" public if only some people can opt into it?!?!?
    The rest of us "LUCK OUT" and get to pay whatever the insurance companies want to charge us.
    And this whole thing about making it illegal to deny people due to preexisting conditions? Is that Constitutional? Can we force auto insurance companies to insure epileptics or multiple DUI offenders?
    To e it smacks of a supreme court issue. What if the insurance companies win? Does Obama just shrug his shoulders and say, "Oh well.."?
    SCREWED AGAIN! I am honestly heart broken over this. I believed that after all the sob stories on the campaign trail about his Mother fighting with the insurance companies on her death bed that this man or whatever he is would be different. I guess the joke was on me!!

    September 9, 2009 at 9:47 pm |
  25. Sue Dailey

    Irs, you maybe right. But to call the President of the United States a liar in front of the whole world is shameful. I would not have had the patience of the President to not call him out in front of God and everyone. Whomever it was I hope he resigns tomorrow. I feel sure he will be called to the President's office where he should promise to issue a letter of regret for his behavior to the American public. Will that happen? . How did this country become disrespectful of the President of the United States? Is there any way to fix this?

    September 9, 2009 at 9:44 pm |
  26. MaryBeth

    Great speech! I agree, I can not believe the rudeness of some of the members of congress. If I weren't such a nice person, I kind of wish they would be dropped by their F R E E health insurance and see how it feels!

    September 9, 2009 at 9:44 pm |
  27. David

    This bipartisan stuff is CRAP. Everyone running for president says it, claims it, and attempts to make us believe it. Tonight DEMS & REPUBICS showed the american people it does not exist and never will. The speech was great but did you see all the anger/hate/discuss from the people on the right what the HELL was that. Which leads me back to something my Dad told me 20 years ago when I started voting," Politicians donot care about anyone they just want to get re-elected,and that's why they are RICH and we are the tax-paying poor."

    Becauseof the disparaging looks from the right even McCain, who I voted for I doubt anything will get done to lower health care cost.
    6Million people unemployement since Oct 08 with no options for lower healthcare do people really think they with pay 30% of an unemployement check for cobra insurance.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:43 pm |
  28. brent scott

    what can we do to make republican congressmen vote for health care reform?

    September 9, 2009 at 9:43 pm |
  29. susan

    Gee. all those things in his plan, his emphasis on "health insurance insecurity," on the dangers of the status quo, etc. – I mentioned all those to whitehouse.gov

    Transparency. Even to the fact that details are not worked out. Blunt. To the Point. Acknowledge the current, and the fallacy of no change will not otherwise have dire consequences. Acknowledge aspects of both sides of debate with some merit, but need to find combination that will work – for the folks it is intended to.

    I especially liked the dig about how the dire predictions of Social Security and Medicare as ushering in socialism have been proven moot, and that these were passed with support from both parties.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:43 pm |
  30. Margaret in OH

    I missed listening to the speech- but just read every word,. I thought it particularly good. I thought that he did a really good job of explaining more details- and acknowledging the problems and people's concerns.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:42 pm |
  31. Cordell

    I agree with u Iris 100% it seems like now that we have someone out to help us tax payers save money as much as we could and no one appreciates it, we hear every day o were in a recession this and that but were really not were only in a recession if u allow ur self to be in a recession, Obama is trying to save us as much money as possible by eliminating alot of bull s*** in other words and they still can't accept it such as illegal allias thats our tax money thats going out to someone who is not paying taxes thats extra money that is coming out of our pockets for someone else to live for free it may sound mean but if u don't stop it now then the so called recession will never stop if we don't help our seniors who else would just like in the speech he made yesterday towards high school students if you don't help someone who is being bullied who else would thats the same for seniors we can't allow these insurance companies to bully them as well as our selves we can't allow them to just dump us off because we are sick

    September 9, 2009 at 9:42 pm |
  32. Maria

    Why do Dems. keep saying the Republicans are critizing the plan but not offer a solution of their own – WHEN REPULICANS HAVE A PLAN AND THE DEMS. ARE IGNORING IT!!!!

    September 9, 2009 at 9:42 pm |
  33. CJ

    WOW!! Joe Wilson is an example of the type of leadership we do not need in our beloved country. Speaking of CHARACTER, where Take a look at that guy. Even if you don't agree, you don't yell at the president of the USA and call him a liar on national TV. What an absolute disgrace. I have never seen such a reaction from a congress man.

    Shameful!! No place of it!!!

    September 9, 2009 at 9:41 pm |
  34. Amber Oates

    Thank You President Obama for continuing to stand up for those that
    are being hurt by greedy America health care industries.
    You gave a great speech tonight. Well done President Obama.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:41 pm |
  35. Terry Jones

    How disrepectful the Congressman was that shouted out a “Lie” during the President’s speech. He should be horse whipped. As for the idiots who keep talking about we can work to come up with a better plan, well guess what, why haven’t they already done it? Our government has had over 200 years to do what’s right on behalf of the American people in terms of providing health care, but its never been done. Back int he 70’s we went under with energy, only for our representatives to laugh it off when gas went back to less than $10 a barrel. Just recently we faced an energy issue that brought our nation to its knees, and the whole world. All because our representatives failed to act responsibly in the 70’s and to date. The next major crisis is going to be derived from financial failure do to escalating health cost that many in Congress refuse to address because they are bought by big business. Thank you President Obama for at least attempting to push health care reform through. We must have change and we must have it now or we are all going to suffer — including our children and our children’s children.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:39 pm |
  36. steven wynn

    Joe Wislon should resign asap!

    September 9, 2009 at 9:38 pm |
  37. sue from indiana

    i am so disappointed, the example of the person who yelled during the speech was so disrespectful ,what kind of example are they giving to young people, who are taught to respect parents, teachers , law in forcement,? we are having such a hard time with young people and old to respect each other, and the example this person gave was so so disapointing, how can you disrespect the president of the united states and expect our young people to show respect in class , at home, on a job. i hope they give the name of the congressman who yelled lier. i will tell him if he is from my state i will never vote for him

    September 9, 2009 at 9:34 pm |
  38. bminor

    I can't believe what I have just seen. I'm not going to repeat what Iris just said but it is so true. To disrespect the office of the President Of the United States in pittiful. What kind of person does that? O yeah a congressman from SC suprise suprise...I have watched many Presidential speeches. I have never seen that before. Some one please give me an explaination. What's different? Looks to me to be the color of the Presidents skin. What a suprise. Republicans how about you try to offer help to the problem. Instead of the usual no no no. Looks like the old white gang seems to have problems taking orders from a black man. What a suprise in America....

    September 9, 2009 at 9:33 pm |
  39. Jenny

    I agree, it is mind blowing to me that he is treated in this manner. What would Jesus do? I would like them to answer that question, since so much of their rhetoric is based on their Christian beliefs. Where is civility in the public debate? Republicans-quit trying to drown out the plan with all your no's and get to work creating a health care plan we all can live with! Democrats get some guts and get to work! I am disgusted with both parties.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:33 pm |
  40. Lampe

    Iris: Where have you been for the last 8 years? You talk about GWB lying.Well if he did, there were alot of groups out there disrespecting him. (Code Pink) is the first one that comes to mind. You act as if everytime GWB took the stage he was treated like Obama is. I don't remember Congress standing up and clapping for 5 or 10 minutes like what happened tonight for Obama.In my eyes it's not the color of his skin, it's the way the Dems are taking too calling people who don't agree with them Racist, or Nazis.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:32 pm |
  41. John Farrell

    I watched President Obama's address today and have to admit – he's an awesome salesman. If he really believed in the product he was selling, he would have volunteered to put himself, his staff, and the House and Senate under the public option upon passage of the bill. I believe the plan would completely colapse because the left want this bill for me but not for themselves.
    As a Marine I was taught to lead by example. Let's see the left lead by example.

    John Farrell
    Parker, Arizona

    September 9, 2009 at 9:31 pm |
  42. Terry Jones

    How disrepectful the Congressman was that shouted out a "Lie" during the President's speech. He should be horse whipped. As for the idiots who keep talking about we can work to come up with a better plan, well guess what, why in the hell haven't they already done it? Our government has had over 200 years to do what's right on behalf of the American people in terms of providing health care, but its never been done. Back int he 70's we went under with energy, only for our representatives to laugh it off when gas went back to less than $10 a barrel. Just recently we faced an energy issue that brought our nation to its knees, and the whole world. All because our representatives failed to act responsibly in the 70's and to date. The next major crisis is going to be derived from financial failure do to escalating health cost that many in Congress refuse to address because they are bought by big business. Thank you President Obama for at least attempting to push health care reform through. We must have change and we must have it now or we are all going to suffer - including our children and our children's children.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:31 pm |
  43. Kelley McGill - Arkansas

    Boehner and Cantor exhibited true unprofessionalism that I expected. For Cantor to sit their on his Blackberry and Boehner to roll his eyes was truly childish, AS I EXPECTED. Disappointing that men (term used ridiculously lightly) cannot show respect to the President of the Country. Not my President, OUR PRESIDENT.

    Considering moving to Cantor's district so I can organize a campaign to defeat him. Completely unacceptable that we have leaders that act like this. Boehner – watch out, I may move to your district.

    On a separate note, Obama should have called both of them out and said "pay attention!"

    September 9, 2009 at 9:31 pm |
  44. Bernadette Onuoha

    How do we expect our children to respect authority when law makers show utter disrespect for the office of the President of the United States. This congressman should be disciplined or made to resign if he can not respect the highest office of this great country.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:30 pm |
  45. Michelle

    I will admit to being a moderate Republican; I will admit that the President hit some core issues and did it well. I do appreciate his passion, even if I don't agree with all of his agenda.

    I also want to state that I found it very offensive that anyone, and particularly a member of our top legislature, would feel that it is appropriate to shout out 'Lie' in the midst of a joint session – there are times and places for that, but I found that completely out of place.

    Contrary to the initial reports, it was not in response to the illegal alien statement; it was in response to federal funding of abortion. I just wish the SC rep had reached above himself before making such an ugly display.

    I hand it to the President for not acknowledging it; very difficult to ignore that sort of disruption.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:29 pm |
  46. Walt

    I whole heartedly agree with Iris' comment above. The level of disrespect that this President has been shown by the opposing political party is disgusting. It's unfortunate that so many American's choose to get their news and information from unreliable sources and then blindly take that information as truth without researching the facts for themselves.

    I thought OUR President (and when I say "our" I mean the president that was freely elected last November) delivered one the best speeches I've heard him give since election night.

    I truly hope that his words will inspire all of our leaders to realize how vital the issue of health care is the country. I hope his leadership will help to quell the yelling match that the debate has become and that real progress can finally be made.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:25 pm |
  47. bigbee

    i am backing the president on this health care,republicans should be ashamed of themselves,it is a waste of taxpayers money keeping these square peg in congress {republicans} taxpayers need to vote all of these elected officals that claims to represent the people of their state.
    dr bouscany is a example of wasted taxpayers dollars representing louisana.suddenly these republicans got their voices back,it seeen that their boss had them gagged for 8 yrs. shame on them,

    September 9, 2009 at 9:24 pm |
  48. susi detwiler


    September 9, 2009 at 9:19 pm |
  49. Trip

    What is going to stop the insurance companies, who will be faced with falling revenue, from increasing their costs to employer plans. Who then will pass this increase to their employee? Lots of talk tonight in the President's speech about not "requiring" companies to change, but that doesn't prevent them. Like many other plans, the cost passing always winds up in the lap of 'main street'.

    September 9, 2009 at 9:18 pm |
  50. Iris

    I really and truly do not understand the blatant disrespect shown to this President. Regardless if you agree or disagree with what he says he's still the President of the United States. As many times as Bush stood before Congress blatantly lying about the War in Iraq he wasn't shown the level of this disrespect. To shout out to the President "You lie"! Wow. What's the difference? Is it the color of his skin?

    September 9, 2009 at 9:11 pm |
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