President Obama has moved to jump-start the stalled health-care debate by inviting Republicans in Congress to participate in a bipartisan, half-day televised summit on the subject. The President made the offer in an interview with CBS News anchor Katie Couric. Obama challenged Republicans to bring their best ideas for how to cover more Americans and fix the health insurance system to the public discussion. The President said he wants to go through, systematically, all the best ideas that are out there and move it forward.
GOP leaders welcomed the outreach but called it evidence that Obama knows he must start over if he wants to earn their support. White House aides quickly rejected the idea. One explained that we are coming with our plan. They can bring their plan.
House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, says the best way to start on real, bipartisan reform would be to scrap the original bills and focus on the kind of step-by-step improvements that will lower health care costs and expand access. Democratic leaders made clear they are not prepared to give up on the progress they made last year.