This morning, President Obama unveiled
for the first time his own plan
for overhauling the nation's health care system. Price tag: $950 billion. Obama's version is strikingly similar to the Senate's own bill, with minor tweaks and yet another new regulatory authority for government agencies. In addition, the proposal doesn't incorporate any major GOP initiatives that weren't already in the Senate bill.
As a result, House Minority Leader John Boehner today is calling the summit stunt a farce:
Rumors are also running rampant around Washington that only select Republicans will be invited by the White House to participate in Thursday's summit. Also, there's a lot of spculation the summit will be used as political fodder and Dems will go ahead with plans to "Rahm" the proposal through in reconciliation with a simple majority vote.
"The President has crippled the credibility of this week’s summit by proposing the same massive government takeover of health care based on a partisan bill the American people have already rejected," Boehner said. "...This week’s summit clearly has all the makings of a Democratic infomercial for continuing on a partisan course that relies on more backroom deals and parliamentary tricks to circumvent the will of the American people and jam through a massive government takeover of health care."
Stay tuned... much more to come later this week.
On Thursday, the White House is planning a cooperative summit, a bipartisan effort to weed out a health care compromise agreeable for both sides of the aisle. However, as the summit draws closer, it's looking more and more like an empty PR stunt on the part of the Obama administration.