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Some initial reactions to Obama’s health care speech from Florida officials

by George Bennett | September 9th, 2009

Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Tequesta

Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Tequesta

Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Tequesta: “Tonight I hoped to hear that the President has been listening to the American people over the past month. From the town hall meetings I hosted in August it is clear to me that Americans have had enough of the rapid expansion of government especially when it comes to an important issue such as health care. We need a plan that does not punish small businesses and tax individuals. Any type of government takeover of our nation’s health care system is not the answer and is unacceptable.”

Sen. Bill Nelson (D)

Sen. Bill Nelson (D)

Sen. Bill Nelson (D): (Reacting to pre-speech excerpts released by the White House) “I’m glad the president is proposing insurance exchanges that will help the nearly one-in-four Floridians who don’t have or cannot get affordable health insurance. Americans who are satisfied with their coverage should be able to keep what they have. And we ought to make coverage affordable for those who don’t have it.”

Rep. Ron Klein, D-Boca Raton

Rep. Ron Klein, D-Boca Raton

Rep. Ron Klein, D-Boca Raton:“Like all Americans, I was glad to hear President Obama lay out a path ahead on health care reform. After listening carefully to South Floridians on all sides of this debate, it is clear that we all agree that we must make real changes to improve our health care system, increase competition and lower costs…. The most important thing is that we have a final product that lowers costs, improves the quality of health care and ensures that Americans cannot be denied coverage because they get sick.”

Klein on the public option: “I thought he made a very good case. The reason I support a public option in some form is competition.”

Rep. Robert Wexler, D-Boca Raton

Rep. Robert Wexler, D-Boca Raton

Rep. Robert Wexler, D-Boca Raton: “The President is absolutely correct that all Americans must have security and stability in their health insurance, and I was pleased to hear him reiterate his support for a public insurance option. I enthusiastically agree with the priorities that President Obama outlined tonight, which include providing affordable and accessible coverage for all Americans, delivering real competition in the market to drive down costs, and helping seniors afford their prescription drugs. Congress is on the cusp of delivering historic change, and tonight President Obama provided the vision and initiative for us to get this done.”

Rep. Kendrick Meek, D-Miami

Rep. Kendrick Meek, D-Miami

Rep. Kendrick Meek, D-Miami, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate:
“Tonight’s speech was a game-changer. President Obama brought clarity to the health care debate. His objective is straightforward: offering stability and security in our health insurance system to Floridians with insurance and to Floridians who lack insurance…With over 80 percent agreement among various committee proposals, it is now time to pull together all components into a single piece of legislation. With skyrocketing health care costs bankrupting American families and businesses, doing nothing is not an option. In Florida alone, over 3,500 people lose their health coverage each week. We cannot afford to sit by and do nothing.”


18 Responses to “Some initial reactions to Obama’s health care speech from Florida officials”

  1. Melissa Says:

    You are going to fine people for not having health insurance? You can use a bus or a bike…car insurance is not the same. People do not choose to live or die like choosing to drive or ride the bus…sorry the rest was good though.

  2. Theodore Lopez Says:

    “The problem is, such irresponsible behavior costs all the rest of us money”. -President Obama tonight.

    Isn’t that the point conservatives have been making for years? Isn’t that what liberals do? Tax responsible citizens(whom they usually call “the rich”) to give to the irresponsible ones (ssually labeled “the poor” or “the middle class” or “working families” or some other nonsense)? What cheek! For those words to come out of the mouth of a man who wiped out Chrysler bondholders to prop up a dying car company and its rotten union, who heaped an enormous debt on future generation to pay for a stimulus plan to nowhere, for him to whine about irresponsible people wasting taxpayer money is mindbending.

  3. fred Says:


  4. Exnjcop Says:

    Ron Klein was on the fence about the Public option when he was around his constituents. Now that he is back in Washington he’s suddenly all for it. He’ll do as told by Pelosi. Vote against Ron Klein

  5. Fed up Says:

    Last night, I attended a large meeting in Jupiter…about 250 senior citizens. Health Care reform was a hot topic. The majority of people who were talking, all said that they voted for Congressman Klein and if he voted in favor of the Public Option they were going to vote against him in 2010. Whoever runs against him will have a real chance of winning in the Jupiter area.

  6. stan cohen Says:

    insurance is a right. I’ve sold medical insurance for over 35 years, and definitly feel that the insurance companies should be taken to the wood shed for putting premium over benefits for the insureds. All they are interested in is profits,especially with the medicare advantage plans-which limits acess and cost the government more than medicare.

  7. mick justice Says:

    Enough already- Its obvious that this is Obama’s attempt at justifying his election- He knows he has been exposed for exactly what he was accused of in the beginning of the campaign period- A socialist and inexperienced- He has no interest in health care or anything else- He is only attempting to save his sinking ship- too late. No more prime time, Odrama- let it sink and get it over with

  8. DAVID Says:

    Respectively Mr. Rooney….You are completely ignorant or ignorant of the facts related to health care in this country.

    BY THE WAY…I voted for you; So not only am I dismayed but embarrassed.

    Like your father, mine was a good man too. I remember him telling me in ??? about 1978….”this country needs health care reform”. I didn’t have a clue what that meant.

    30+ years later and several economic inflations have made it clear. I have worked for 3 international corporations who, when insurance premiums increased; passed the cost on to me. I began to understand. My out of pocket expenses or deductibles went from $500 to today $5000. Not so bad you say. OK.

    The other side of the equation is this:
    Every year on my tax bill I pay to the Palm Beach county health care district. What do I get from that? I get the privilege of providing payment for health care coverage for people in Palm Beach county. Yes those people who do not have employer provided or self insured insurance and who don’t own real estate in the county.

    This tax began when you were still in high school snapping towels in the locker room. BUT, you and I are paying for others health insurance. AS WELL as paying for your own. So don’t scream “SOCIALISM”…..OH WAIT, now you have an elected position in the United States of America. You have health care coverage………..and for how long. For as long as you hold a position in the State of Florida. If you should land a seat in the federal government, -which by the way will never happen- then you have health care for life…..PLUS a pension for life….After only 4 years of service. DISPICTABLE.

    What about the 1 in 4 of us in this country that don’t have coverage or the next percentage that have to pay for our own?

    Your words….”Government take over of the health care system”. The proposal, you obviously havn’t paid attention to is called a “HEALTH CARE OPTION”, option being the key phrase for you and the rest of the ………..?

    I’ve been rational to this point…BUT LET ME ASK YOU THIS! Are you on drugs?

    Sincerely, Concerned about electing you…BUT knowing I can change that in the future.

  9. jimbo Says:

    Unfortunately once again Obama is lying to us. Here are some of the provisions in the House Bills- you decide:
    Pg 30 Sec 123 of HC bill – a Government committee (good luck with that!) will decide what treatments/benefits a person may receive.

    Pg 29 lines 4-16 in the HC bill – YOUR HEALTHCARE WILL BE RATIONED! (We all knew this, because health care is rationed in Canada and Britain, but Obama kept saying it would not be).

    Pg 42 of HC Bill – The Health Choices Commissioner will choose your HC Benefits for you. You will have no choice!

    PG 50 Section 152 in HC bill – HC will be provided to ALL non US citizens, illegal or otherwise.

    Pg 58 HC Bill – Government will have real-time access to individual’s finances and a National ID Healthcard will be issued!

    Pg 59 HC Bill lines 21-24 Government will have direct access to your bank accts for election funds transfer

    PG 65 Sec 164 is a payoff subsidized plan for retirees and their families in Unions & community organizations (read: ACORN).

    Pg 72 Lines 8-14 Government will create an HC Exchange to bring private HC plans under Government control.

    PG 84 Sec 203 HC bill – Government mandates ALL benefit packages for private HC plans in the Exchange.

    PG 85 Line 7 HC Bill – Specifics of Benefit Levels for Plans = The Government will ration your Healthcare!

    PG 91 Lines 4-7 HC Bill – Government mandates linguistic appropriate services. Example – Translation for illegal aliens.

    Pg 95 HC Bill Lines 8-18 The Government will use groups, i.e. ACORN & Americorps, to sign up individuals for Government HC plan.

    PG 85 Line 7 HC Bill – Specifics of Benefit Levels for Plans. AARP members – your Health care WILL be rationed.

    -PG 102 Lines 12-18 HC Bill – Medicaid Eligible Individuals will be automatically enrolled in Medicaid. No choice.

    pg 124 lines 24-25 HC No company can sue Government on price fixing. No “judicial review” against Government Monopoly.

    pg 127 Lines 1-16 HC Bill – Doctors/ AMA – The Government will tell YOU what you can earn.

    Pg 145 Line 15-17 An Employer MUST auto enroll employees into public option plan. NO CHOICE.

    Pg 126 Lines 22-25 Employers MUST pay for HC for part time employees AND their families.

    Pg 149 Lines 16-24 ANY Employer with payroll $400k & above who does not provide public option pays 8% tax on all payroll.

    pg 150 Lines 9-13 Businesses with payroll between $251k & $400k who don’t provide public option pay 2-6% tax on all payroll.

    Pg 167 Lines 18-23 ANY individual who doesn’t have acceptable HC according to Government will be taxed 2.5% of income.

    Pg 170 Lines 1-3 HC Bill Any NONRESIDENT Alien is exempt from individual taxes. (Americans will pay.)

    Pg 195 HC Bill -officers & employees of HC Admin (the GOVERNMENT) will have access to ALL Americans’ finances and personal records.

    PG 203 Line 14-15 HC – “The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax” Yes, it says that.

    Pg 239 Line 14-24 HC Bill Government will reduce physician services for Medicaid. Seniors, low income, poor affected.

    Pg 241 Line 6-8 HC Bill – Doctors – doesn’t matter what specialty – will all be paid the same.

    PG 253 Line 10-18 Government sets value of Doctor’s time, professional judgment, etc. Literally, value of humans.

    PG 265 Sec 1131Government mandates & controls productivity for private HC industries.

    PG 268 Sec 1141 Federal Government regulates rental & purchase of power driven wheelchairs.

    PG 272 SEC. 1145. TREATMENT OF CERTAIN CANCER HOSPITALS – Cancer patients – welcome to rationing!

    Page 280 Sec 1151 The Government will penalize hospitals for what Government deems preventable readmissions.

    Pg 298 Lines 9-11 Doctors who treat a patient during initial admission that results in a readmission – Government will penalize you.

    Pg 317 L 13-20 OMG!! PROHIBITION on ownership/investment. Government tells Doctors what/how much they can own.

    Pg 317-318 lines 21-25,1-3 PROHIBITION on expansion – Government will mandate hospitals cannot expand.

    pg 321 2-13 Hospitals have opportunity to apply for exception BUT community input required. Can u say ACORN?!

    Pg335 L 16-25 Pg 336-339 – Government mandates establishment of outcome-based measures which of course forces health care rationing.

    Pg 341 Lines 3-9 Government has authority to disqualify Medicare Adv Plans, HMOs, etc., forcing people into Government plan.

    Pg 354 Sec 1177 – Government will RESTRICT enrollment of Special needs people!

    Pg 379 Sec 1191 Government creates more bureaucracy – Telehealth Advisory Committee. HC by phone.

    Pg 429 Lines 13-25 – The Government will specify which Doctors can write an end of life order.

    PG 430 Lines 11-15 The Government will decide what level of treatment you will have at end of life.

    Pg 469 – Community Based Home Medical Services/Non profit orgs. (ACORN Medical Services here?)

    Page 472 Lines 14-17 PAYMENT

    TO COMMUNITY-BASED ORGANIZATION. 1 monthly payment to a community-based organization. (Like ACORN?)

  10. DAVID Says:

    Mick Justice…You are just limp brained. Socialism is already here. The problem is it is only spread over the lower income citizens and paid for by the “working” “legal” citizens of the country…..
    Please get off your political horse and recognize the ISSUE..HEALTH CARE REFORM an alternative to the price gouging insurance companies that have us all bent over the barrel.

  11. Robert Says:

    Jimbo, that health care bill you have studied is not the final copy. Why don’t you wait until the big boys make revisions. It’s people like you who jump the gun and spread hate that stands in the way of progress. If we don’t do something now, we are doomed!

  12. CatoTheCensor Says:

    Jimbo, any analysis that contains ‘OMG,’ hysterical imputations in capital letters and exclamation points is, forgive me, immediately suspect.

    Theodore Lopez, don’t even try to defend the Republican record on taxation, when the Bush tax cuts will have cost us nearly $2.5 trillion in lost revenues from 2001-2010, or 2.5 times the projected cost of HR 3200 (the healthcare reform plan drawing the most attention and fire from conservatives and the media) over the next decade. No one who voted to pass those tax cuts gets to call himself or herself a fiscal conservative, ever again.

    52.5% of those tax cut benefits will go to the richest 5% of taxpayers, in short, the ones who didn’t need the help. But conservatives are fiscally responsible. “They are all honorable men.”

  13. swathdiver Says:

    Comrade Presidente Obama predictably lied again. HE has NO plan. Hasn’t put one forth. HR3200 is THE plan with the death panels, care for illegals, forces everyone onto it within a set number of years, etc. Nothing new from Obama tonight, just more of the same BS.

    Republican response was lame, should have had Rush or Levin! Someone with passion and who didn’t need to read a teleprompter!

    Socialism in any form is immoral and EVIL.

    For you drones posting here tonight, the tactic of the Communist/Statist in America is to legislate an industry in chaos and then act like government, specifically the Democratic Party are the only ones that can save it. Yes it’s fascism but more importantly exposes them as deceitful and evil. Government intervention is why costs are high.

    Liberty or Tyranny drones? Do you want someone in Washington telling YOU when its ok to go to the doctor?

  14. Camille Says:

    Jimbo, which crackpot blog did you copy and paste this from? Good lord. Please educate yourself, you’re embarrassing yourself.

    This is very important, so I’ll speak slowly: We all agree that health care and insurance need reform, and we need to talk to each other like adults to solve this. We need Republicans to contribute ideas and valid arguments to further the discussion, so please stop spreading bullshit like this. Right now you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem.

    Unfortunately, for the past couple years we’ve seen the Republicans spiral downward and become unable to articulate coherent viewpoints – instead, we got shouts of ‘kill him’ at Palin rallies, we got people bringing guns to intimidate at town hall meetings, and we got a congressman yelling ‘you lie’ at the Commander-In-Chief.
    Conservatives are showing their true colors, and the colors are pretty ugly.

  15. mike Says:

    Jimbo did a lot of work, too bad it doesn’t mean much.
    Here’s how it works in the health insurance side today.
    Remember that neighbor down the street, the one who was the cashier at the gas station at the corner.
    They lost there job there, and now they work at an insurance company, authorizing claims.
    Here’s how their life goes, Doctors offices call in for authorization, your former gas staion cashier types the codes or words into their computer terminal and begins to play “twenty questions’.
    They do not have to know the answers the software does the decision making, if the answer is no. The former gas station cashier informs the Doctors office the proceedure is not covered.
    If no other isues are raised, the authorization is denied and should something like the patient dies, this whole incident was that patient’s “death panel” review.
    Jimbo, may that call never be yours.
    But, rest assured, one day it will be.
    That’s how it is, and you support it.

  16. Regina Says:

    Vote against Ron Klein.

    He didn’t even show up at a healthcare meeting, but Alcee Hastings did!

    Ron is a wimp. Kudos to Hastings for being a man and LISTENING and responding to the public who showed up with questions and concerns.

    This is a good indication as to how Klein will continue to conduct himself.







    And the dmeocrats actually think that by cutting Medicare by $500 BILLION that things will be better for the elderly?

    Democrats better stop surrounding themselves with nodders, because the public is informed and angry with their rhetoric.

  17. Regina Says:


    Baby Boomers paid into Social Security for four and a half decades and are now being told there’s no money left!

    Why is there no money? Because Congress took the excess money sitting in Social Security and spent it on other things!!!!

    We have the BEST healthcare in the world with a huge population. NO wonder we spend more!

    American population: 304,000,000
    English population: 61,000,000
    France population: 62,000,000
    Canada population: 31,000,000
    Swiss population: 8,000,000
    Germany Population: 82,000,000
    Israel population: 7,000,000
    We have the BEST healthcare, with a huge population. People come to this country. With ObamaCare: our healthcare will be rationed. With Immigration Reform and Family Reunification there will be EVEN more people coming to this country.

    And infant mortality: Many members of the European Union don’t count as a “live birth” any baby who is born and then dies -if that baby’s gestation period is 26 weeks or less. While the US counts any baby that took a breath as a “live birth” and then death.

    You just CAN’T compare those numbers. They are LIES!

    The US has the Best healthcare! Be proud and don’t let it get diluted, rationed.

    Call, email, write, speak out!

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